Kevin De Bruyne masterclass rescues Man City to keep title pressure on Liverpool

Kevin De Bruyne scored twice as Man City beat Crystal Palace 4-2 (Image: Getty)

A Kevin De Bruyne masterclass kept Manchester City’s title challenge alive as they came from behind to beat Crystal Palace 4-2. Jean-Philippe Mateta put the hosts ahead but goals from Rico Lewis, Erling Haaland and a De Bruyne brace flipped the game on it’s head. Ousmane Edward scored a late consultation four minutes from time. Express Sport takes a look at the biggest talking points…

De Bruyne back to best

De Bruyne is finding his top form exactly at the right time. After being dropped to the bench against Aston Villa in the week, the Belgian grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck on his return to the starting XI and curled in a stunning equaliser.

The playmaker helped Haaland break his goalscoring duck, crossing the ball low for him to turn home from close range. De Bruyne notched his 100th City goal with a left-footed snapshot from Rodri’s lay-off.

The win leaves City level on points with Premier League leaders Liverpool, with Jurgen Klopp’s men heading to Old Trafford tomorrow.

Kevin De Bruyne struck his second goal from just inside the box (Image: Getty)

City defensive issues

For the first time in years City look genuinely vulnerable at the back. Mateta regularly found space by peeling off John Stones’ shoulder. They never learned from the third-minute opening goal.

Jordan Ayew rattled the crossbar and Stefan Ortega showed good feet after Mateta almost cut out Rodri’s loose backpass.

Josko Gvardiol was very fortunate not to give a penalty away on the stroke of half time after bundling into the back of Eberechi Eze.

City did not look comfortable with the Palace counter-attack and it will certainly give their future opponents hope of pulling off an upset.

Guardiola gamble pays off

Not many Premier League managers drop a player just days after they scored a hat-trick, but that is exactly why Pep Guardiola is up there with the best. Foden was head and shoulders above the rest against Villa last time out but he wasn’t afforded a single minute at Selhurst Park.

Guardiola opted to rest his key man in anticipation of the trip to Real Madrid on Tuesday night. It initially looked like the gamble may have come at a costly price when City fell behind early on.

But youngster Lewis proved a capable deputy and scored the cruical goal to put the Blues ahead, and from there they never looked back.