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The real hero of Man City’s Champions League win wasn’t De Bruyne

| 22.10.2015

Kevin De Bruyne has understandably been drenched in plaudits having sunk Sevilla at the death with a sublime finish, but while the Belgian is a rare talent, another of his Manchester City teammates arguably deserves higher praise.

He’s a sensitive soul alright, but any team in the world would be better off with Yaya Toure in it.

City’s sulky skipper was at his marauding best in the Champions League, meaning rumours surrounding a potential move to the Big Apple at the end of the season should be met with trepidation by fans.

Toure’s almost unique ability to grab a game by the scruff of the neck, ensured his team earned the come-from-behind victory they so desperately needed.

Although he didn’t apply the finishing touches, the Ivorian’s contribution to both City goals was truly vintage stuff.

After his first trademark burst from halfway took him deep into Sevilla territory, an overzealous pass briefly threatened to make his lung-burn in vain, but rather than give up on the attack Toure gambled by continuing his run into the box.

The punt paid off when the ball was clipped into him, before his touch, strength and skill then saw him wriggle free of his marker to pick out Raheem Sterling, leading to the equaliser.

The sheer will to create something when the chips were down was the most impressive part of his donation to the goal.

Then in the dying seconds it was Toure on the rampage again, sending Sevilla defenders backpedalling in unison before calmly inviting De Bruyne into the box with a slotted pass.

His Belgian teammate did the rest, but at a time when Toure’s chin is reportedly in need of lifting off the ground, he certainly let his talking be done on the pitch, for a change.

As a result of his captain’s heroics, the continental outlook is now far rosier for Manuel Pellegrini’s men who sit just a point off leaders Juventus in Group D, priced at 5/4 to overhaul them and win the group with three games left.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.