De Bruyne is the worst 80M€ player out there

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Post by Great Leader Sprucenuce Thu Apr 18, 2019 2:40 pm

Mr Nick09 wrote:
Great Leader Sprucenuce wrote:He posted in our section not that long ago, 6 weeks ago max.
corrected for historical accuracy


That's the funny thing about history, very often it's just that hmm

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Post by danyjr Thu Apr 18, 2019 3:17 pm

He posted a couple of things in a day after a very long time (1+ year) and disappeared again.

Hope the kid is alright though. Used to annoy him a lot and I kinda regret it.
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Post by Casciavit Thu Dec 01, 2022 6:30 pm

One of my favorite players, but what an awful showing from him this WC
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Post by Myesyats Thu Dec 01, 2022 6:37 pm

danyjr wrote:@free_cat is sorely missed for his ridiculous , often (but not always) incorrect assessments of players.

Hope he's alive and well!

another one who disappeared randomly

last visit: February 5th 2019, 09:38

missed the entire covid era, hope he didnt succumb to the disease

covid era and LEVER era* most importantly
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Post by El Gunner Thu Dec 01, 2022 6:47 pm

Casciavit wrote:One of my favorite players, but what an awful showing from him this WC

hopefully he takes his stinky form back to Man Shitty
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Post by Myesyats Thu Dec 01, 2022 6:53 pm

KDB was pretty vocal about there being too many games and the decision-makers not caring about players' well-being so I assume he didn't care much for these games, on top of some bad atmosphere within the Belgian team camp

He'll get some rest now and return back to the club in top shape, I presume
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Post by futbol_bill Thu Dec 01, 2022 7:33 pm

Myesyats wrote:
danyjr wrote:@free_cat is sorely missed for his ridiculous , often (but not always) incorrect assessments of players.

Hope he's alive and well!


another one who disappeared randomly

last visit: February 5th 2019, 09:38

missed the entire covid era, hope he didnt succumb to the disease

covid era and LEVER era* most importantly

Nah, he disappeared with Puigdemont when the Catalans lost!
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Post by M99 Thu Dec 01, 2022 8:46 pm

I hate how all the PL pundits and media have made it a universal fact that this guy is the best midfielder in the world.

Until Luka Modric retires, he won't be.
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Post by BarcaLearning Thu Dec 01, 2022 11:08 pm

Messi only seem to get criticized for nothing doing it n especially not winning the WC with the NT, the rest of the star players get nothing close to the kind of criticism when doing bad for their NT, goes to show ppl measure him with another level of standard Razz
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Post by halamadrid2 Fri Dec 02, 2022 10:09 am

We saw against Croatia that there are levels between Modric and KDB. He's lucky that he can statpadd in a stacked team
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Post by McAgger Sat Dec 03, 2022 6:34 am

DeBruyne had an awful World Cup. He was very poor in 2018 as well except the Brazil match. I especially recall how bad he was against France in the SF.

The worst part of his game that he's developed in the last few years is how much he just strolls and walks around like he's Messi. He was a workhorse when he was younger. At City it works because he doesn't have those responsibilities and they dominate so much of the possession and space but being a passenger and liability off the ball is only really okay when you're Messi lol. His walking stats being comparable to Messi for the World Cup were shocking and embarrassing.

Honestly, it's very hard to place him legacy wise because Guardiola's City is just the about the most perfect system for him and his skillset. His final pass is certainly the best or amongst the best all time but he really does attempt like 20 a game for like 3-4 of them to connect and those become highlight reel plays and social media goes crazy thinking OMG the goat creator. He loses possession so often. He now has the 2 highest possession lost games by an individual in the history of the World Cup.

At City it works because his entire role is to play a free role (essentially a free forward) not even a traditional midfield role, get the ball the right half space inside the channels and whip throughballs and crosses. The offensive juggernaut that is Guardiola's system cannot be overstated and the positions it puts DeBruyne in utilizes his absolute best skill sets, which is his deadly final ball.

Honestly, the rest of his game is not all time elite midfielder level.

-He doesn't have the technical ability of the absolute elites Zidane/Xavi/Iniesta/Modric or even the likes of Thiago/Verratti.

-He doesn't dictate matches/tempo like Busquets/Xavi/Modric/Kroos/Pirlo

-He doesn't have the long range passing of Alonso/Pirlo/Kroos/Gerrard/Scholes.

-He doesn't have the dribbling ability or ball carrying ability of the likes of Zidane/Iniesta

-He doesn't have the pure athleticism & physicality of Gerrard/Vieira

-He doesn't have the 3rd man driving runs into box of Lampard/Gerrard or their goalscoring prowess

-He used to be an elite progressive passer but him playing as basically a forward disguised as a midfielder by name only, means he's really too far up the pitch to utilize this part of his game. Especially with Belgium, playing in a front 3 pretty much negates his vertical passing in the middle 3rd.

-He's really poor in the defensive side of the game.

Listen, none of those guys had all of the skills/traits I mentioned. Many of them were more complete than him though, some in the technical side of the game (Zidane/Xavi/Iniesta/Modric) & some in the dynamic side of the game (Gerrard/Vieira/Lampard). DeBruyne is still great at a lot of these skills and better than 99% modern midfielders.

His final ball is better than all of those guys mentioned though even if he attempts a gazillion tries. His crossing is only 2nd to Beckham all time. The ground crosses, he's even better than Beckham at.

He certainly will belong in the talks for a top 10 midfielder all time. His chance creation alone will put him there.

I will say, though, about his mentality. He's got the worst mentality of an all time great midfielder ever. He crumbles like a sack of potatoes with the first sign of adversity. The fact that he failed to step up and carry the ridiculously stacked juggernaut teams past Lyons/Monacos/Tottenhams in CL is abhorrent. I have not seen a performance in a titanic game from him like Zidane in WC Final, Gerrard in a CL final, Xavi in CL finals, Modric in CL finals, Iniesta in a Euro final etc. He refuses to step up in those moments.

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Post by El Gunner Sat Dec 03, 2022 8:27 am

Good summation, MCAgger. He obviously has a talented skill level and he is great in the Pep system, and that's all that he is really great at. But let's also remember the natural progression he's playing style endured under these 6 years. If he played in another system for his club he might have polished some of the other qualities of an elite all-time midfielder, such as the workhorse-aspect and other box-to-box qualities because that's the type of midfielder he started as early in his career.

I think he will still go down as one of the best Belgian players and a Man City legend.
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Post by futbol_bill Sat Dec 03, 2022 5:00 pm

Not to mention the discord in this Belgium team that he started.
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Post by Thimmy Sat Dec 03, 2022 5:05 pm

McAgger wrote:DeBruyne had an awful World Cup. He was very poor in 2018 as well except the Brazil match. I especially recall how bad he was against France in the SF.

The worst part of his game that he's developed in the last few years is how much he just strolls and walks around like he's Messi. He was a workhorse when he was younger. At City it works because he doesn't have those responsibilities and they dominate so much of the possession and space but being a passenger and liability off the ball is only really okay when you're Messi lol. His walking stats being comparable to Messi for the World Cup were shocking and embarrassing.

Honestly, it's very hard to place him legacy wise because Guardiola's City is just the about the most perfect system for him and his skillset. His final pass is certainly the best or amongst the best all time but he really does attempt like 20 a game for like 3-4 of them to connect and those become highlight reel plays and social media goes crazy thinking OMG the goat creator. He loses possession so often. He now has the 2 highest possession lost games by an individual in the history of the World Cup.

Yeah.. something I've observed in him, now that I watch Man City with some regularity is that although he's capable of the most insane, defense-splitting passes and crosses on occasion, he's not really as consistent at it as you'd expect him to be. He might just be having an off season, for all I know. When he does succeed with his most ambitious passes, he looks like a FIFA player with those inch perfect long balls and through balls. But he also spends a lot of time miscalculating them and giving away possession, and what's perhaps surprised me the most is his lack of positional awareness in certain situations where I'd expect him, of all people, to be on top of things. I was always under the impression that he excelled at spotting team mates in open space, but it does often seem like he picks a target and then sticks with it instead of looking for other options.

He gets credited a lot for being the catalyst behind Haaland's goalscoring prowess for City, and the stats would probably back that argument up to some extent, but he has an annoying tendency to not notice Haaland when he's open for simple passes, and also has a tendency to spray crosses into the box for him when the likelihood of hitting the right target is much lower. His potential passing quality is definitely world class, but his sustainable productiveness has been rather underwhelming compared to what I had expected from him. I definitely think he's a top player, but he does have his fair share of flaws.


-He doesn't have the long range passing of Alonso/Pirlo/Kroos/Gerrard/Scholes.

He's certainly not as consistent at it as any of those 5 were, but he'd probably rival them all in a highlight reel. His clutch shooting ability is up there as well, it never ceases to amaze me.
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Post by McAgger Sat Dec 03, 2022 10:25 pm

Thimmy wrote:
Yeah.. something I've observed in him, now that I watch Man City with some regularity is that although he's capable of the most insane, defense-splitting passes and crosses on occasion, he's not really as consistent at it as you'd expect him to be. He might just be having an off season, for all I know. When he does succeed with his most ambitious passes, he looks like a FIFA player with those inch perfect long balls and through balls. But he also spends a lot of time miscalculating them and giving away possession, and what's perhaps surprised me the most is his lack of positional awareness in certain situations where I'd expect him, of all people, to be on top of things. I was always under the impression that he excelled at spotting team mates in open space, but it does often seem like he picks a target and then sticks with it instead of looking for other options.


This is actually spot on. He had one this world cup that was doing the rounds on social media which was unforgivable

https://streamable.com/uw1vfr

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Post by Casciavit Sat Dec 03, 2022 11:20 pm

Pep has a love-hate relationship with KDB. It's no surprise the one year they made it to the CL finals he wasn't allowed to play in midfield. Laughing

I don't agree about him not being clutch though. In 2019 he had a hattrick of assists against Spurs and that was one of his best games ever. In 2020, he scored a penalty against Madrid. In 2020, he was the only one who scored against Lyon. In 2021, he scored a goal against each team in the CL knockout round. It was his goal against PSG that started the comeback. In 2022, he was the only one who scored against Atletico when City couldn't break through the bus. He also scored against Madrid in the first leg. No one in City has had the big game impact he's had in the CL in the last 2 years aside from Mahrez.

The two main CL appearances he gets flak for is the CL final in 2021 and the 2nd leg against Madrid. He wasn't really involved against Chelsea, but he was subbed off injured in the 60th minute. In 2022 against Madrid he dropped a stinker and kept losing the ball with wayward passes.

The thing is though he's one of those players who even if he's having a shit game, he has the ability to create something out of nothing. City would've looked a lot more threatening in those final 30 minutes if they had De Bruyne leading the charge with them being 1-0 behind. They would've fared a lot better against Madrid in Extra Time when they were down if they had De Bruyne to spam crosses.

Aside from him and Gundogan (sometimes), no one really attempts through balls at Man City. In fact, I'd wager that no one is really elite at them and tries them regularly aside from Messi, Neymar, and KDB. Bruno attempts them a lot, but he's even more careless than De Bruyne is.


Last edited by Casciavit on Sat Dec 03, 2022 11:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by Thimmy Sat Dec 03, 2022 11:45 pm

McAgger wrote:
Thimmy wrote:
Yeah.. something I've observed in him, now that I watch Man City with some regularity is that although he's capable of the most insane, defense-splitting passes and crosses on occasion, he's not really as consistent at it as you'd expect him to be. He might just be having an off season, for all I know. When he does succeed with his most ambitious passes, he looks like a FIFA player with those inch perfect long balls and through balls. But he also spends a lot of time miscalculating them and giving away possession, and what's perhaps surprised me the most is his lack of positional awareness in certain situations where I'd expect him, of all people, to be on top of things. I was always under the impression that he excelled at spotting team mates in open space, but it does often seem like he picks a target and then sticks with it instead of looking for other options.


This is actually spot on. He had one this world cup that was doing the rounds on social media which was unforgivable

https://streamable.com/uw1vfr



I didn't watch that match, but that's exactly what I mean. He seems to just lock on to a target instead of looking around for better options. It can be quite frustrating to watch sometimes.
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Post by McAgger Sat Dec 03, 2022 11:47 pm

Casciavit wrote:
Aside from him and Gundogan (sometimes), no one really attempts through balls at Man City. In fact, I'd wager that no one is really elite at them and tries them regularly aside from Messi, Neymar, and KDB. Bruno attempts them a lot, but he's even more careless than De Bruyne is.


Throughballs are definitely a lost art. I think the transition from on the shoulder CF's making runs in behind from the center like Torres/Eto'o/David Villa and a lot more teams playing with the false 9 or coming to feet for the ball CF's these days like Benz/Firmino/Kane has a lot to do with it.

Wide forwards are generally making a lot of these runs nowadays and it's usually only in transition. So when a throughball is played, it's a lot more lofted balls wider into space rather on the path of a CF darting through the middle.

The death of the creative AM with that skillset also plays a part. Hardly anyone uses these players behind a CF these days. You're either a midfielder in a 3 or you're part of the front 3 free to roam. The 00s and early parts of 2010s was littered with class AMs/SS/Trequartista who would play behind a CF and be the main creative force. The Totti/DelPierro/Kaka/Riquelme and later on the likes of Ozil/Mata no longer have a place in today's game. When you have talents like Dybala, Coutinho, and James Rodriquez of that ilk emerge, they are asked to play wide of a front 3 if they can't cut it in a midfield 3. I suspect players like Grealish/Foden would be strictly AM's in those years not wide forwards.

I think partly Guardiola's Barca and the Spanish tiki taka of those years are to blame. Guardiola/DelBosque brought about the false 9 roles with Messi/Cesc, creative AM's like Iniesta/David Silva were playing deeper as part of midfield 3s instead of in behind a CF in the hole. Wingers turned into wide forwards making the runs in behind, fullbacks started to provide the width previously done by wingers, now fullbacks have emerged that have skillsets never before seen in fullbacks. Those shifts changed a lot of roles for players.
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Post by Casciavit Sat Dec 03, 2022 11:49 pm

De Bruyne's worst habits come out when he's playing midfield in high-pressure CL games. His playing style leads to City resorting to basketball games. The ball just goes from one end to another. I honestly think that's why Madrid have been so successful in the CL this decade. Whenver it seemed like Madrid was going to engage in that kind of chaos, you had guys like Modric, Kroos, and Benz who completely killed the tempo and allowed the team to string passes together. De Bruyne tries playing a through ball the first chance he gets.

Now having a chaotic player in midfield like that isn't a bad thing. They can be advantageous. However, City as a team are just not set up to succeed playing that kind of chaotic football. Ederson never bails them out, Cancelo is a mistake waiting to happen, Laporte chokes in every big CL game, De Bruyne constantly loses the ball, and their strikers needed 3/4 clear chances to score 1 goal.

In 2021 Pep decided that the way to circumvent that was to build his team to control games. That's why he benched mavericks like Sane and Sterling who would lose the ball regularly to ball retention magnets like Mahrez and Grealish. That's why KDB was moved to false 9 and he played Gundogan and Bernardo in midfield instead. That's why he benched Cancelo for Zinchenko in the big games. That's also why he was adamant on signing Kane in 2021 instead of going for Haaland. He thought the key to win the CL was by minimizing as many mistakes as possible. The plan was to dominate the game and play death by a 1000 passes.

The thing is though you can't ever really dominate CL games from start to finish. The quality is just way too high. I think he gave up on that ambition after the Madrid loss. The importance of killers is just too significant. Benzema outperformed his xG by double.

So he binned Jesus and Sterling, and he brought in Haaland and Alvarez. Will Haaland and Alvarez score every sitter? No. However, they have a higher probability of doing so than the two former jesters did. Pep has caved into the fact that CL football is end to end now. His first action was to sign killers up front, but the rest of the team still isn't suited for those kind of games. I believe his next signings will involve building a team that can play that chaotic football. That might explain why he said Ortega as Ederson's back up, as Ortega was one of the best shot stoppers in terms of xG last year. That could also explain why he wants Jude to replace Gundogan. Jude is a machine when it comes to winning duels and his athleticism suits chaotic football better.

That being said the current squad is weird. Haaland signaled a shift away from the obsession about control, but the rest of the team is the same. He still doesn't trust his team in chaotic matches, and this was reflected in the Liverpool game when he played KDB at RW. Haaland brings out KDB's bad habits even more. I'd be surprised if KDB plays in midfield with Haaland up top in the big CL games. I feel like he'll either resort to 3 at the back, or shift De Bruyne to the wing to compensate. If he does play KDB in midfield, then I would be interested to see what the rest of the team looks like. You might see guys like Ortega, Ake, Phillips, and Alvarez starting a big CL game together if that's the case.
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Post by Casciavit Sat Dec 03, 2022 11:58 pm

That Liverpool game in Anfield is how the big CL games will play out. They'll be fast paced and end-to-end. One team will get a goal ruled out by VAR or miss a sitter. The next minute the opposing team will score a 1 on 1 from your players mistake.
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Post by Casciavit Sun Dec 04, 2022 12:10 am

McAgger wrote:
Casciavit wrote:
Aside from him and Gundogan (sometimes), no one really attempts through balls at Man City. In fact, I'd wager that no one is really elite at them and tries them regularly aside from Messi, Neymar, and KDB. Bruno attempts them a lot, but he's even more careless than De Bruyne is.


Throughballs are definitely a lost art. I think the transition from on the shoulder CF's making runs in behind from the center like Torres/Eto'o/David Villa and a lot more teams playing with the false 9 or coming to feet for the ball CF's these days like Benz/Firmino/Kane has a lot to do with it.

Wide forwards are generally making a lot of these runs nowadays and it's usually only in transition. So when a throughball is played, it's a lot more lofted balls wider into space rather on the path of a CF darting through the middle.

The death of the creative AM with that skillset also plays a part. Hardly anyone uses these players behind a CF these days. You're either a midfielder in a 3 or you're part of the front 3 free to roam. The 00s and early parts of 2010s was littered with class AMs/SS/Trequartista who would play behind a CF and be the main creative force. The Totti/DelPierro/Kaka/Riquelme and later on the likes of Ozil/Mata no longer have a place in today's game. When you have talents like Dybala, Coutinho, and James Rodriquez of that ilk emerge, they are asked to play wide of a front 3 if they can't cut it in a midfield 3. I suspect players like Grealish/Foden would be strictly AM's in those years not wide forwards.

I think partly Guardiola's Barca and the Spanish tiki taka of those years are to blame. Guardiola/DelBosque brought about the false 9 roles with Messi/Cesc, creative AM's like Iniesta/David Silva were playing deeper as part of midfield 3s instead of in behind a CF in the hole. Wingers turned into wide forwards making the runs in behind, fullbacks started to provide the width previously done by wingers, now fullbacks have emerged that have skillsets never before seen in fullbacks. Those shifts changed a lot of roles for players.


The players who come up right now are the product of what winning teams have used in the last decade.

Nowadays, young kids don't grow up wanting to be a creative #10. CAM used to be the most prestigious position when I was a kid.

They grow up wanting to be wide forwards who score 40 goals a year because that's what Messi and Ronaldo did. You see it with Mbappe right now. He doesn't want to play as a #9, but he wants to play on the wing instead.

It applies to midfield too. They see Modric spinning in circles or Yaya Toure carrying the ball up the pitch so they want to be press-resistant CM's now. Is there a single U26 CM who can do a through ball? The Pep effect has made managers so scared about losing the ball in the middle, so they want to all attack through the wings now.

You see it in defensive midfield. They grow up looking up to Casemiro or Kante. Busquets is one of the most influential DM's ever, but does he have any U23 players who plays like him? The closest are guys closer to his age like Jorginho or Paredes. Are there any upcoming registas who can ping the ball from side to side or down the channels like Pirlo or Alonso did?

But football profiles are cyclical. The game is always evolving and different profiles will be prioritized over others at different points in time. We are seeing the comeback of the big #9 who runs in behind with Haaland and Nunez. Pep was using touchline wingers who attack the byline instead of cutting inside between 2016-2019 (Coman, Costa, Sterling, Sane). 4-2-3-1 seems like a dead formation, but I imagine that will become popular again as more teams park the bus with a 5-4-1, so managers will attack in a 2-2-6 to combat that.
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