Sterling brace takes Man City top once more

Tottenham Hotspur host Manchester City in the second leg of their UEFA Champions League tie on Wednesday

Losing two such influential players ahead of a do-or-die clash with the Premier League champions would be a hammer blow to most teams.

De Bruyne, who has been limited to only 15 appearances in the league this campaign because of injuries, feels City can be positive about their season even if they don't retain the title.

Both players arrived at the Etihad in the summer of 2016, with De Bruyne keen to shed his "Chelsea reject" tag and Sterling eager to show he isn't just a "flash guy".

The pair combined to score Man City's first goal in their 3-1 win against Crystal Palace on Sunday, De Bruyne playing a flawless pass and Sterling finishing well.

Though De Bruyne was sold to Wolfsburg the next month, he insists he has no problem with the way his career at the London club came to an end.

In fact, after reading reports about Sterling in the English press, De Bruyne thought Sterling would be "a bit of a d***head".

De Bruyne recalled a odd meeting with Mourinho in his office. "But the truth is that I only ever spoke to him twice", De Bruyne as quoted as writing in The Players' Tribune. So I will let you in on a little secret.

De Bruyne and Sterling both joined Manchester City in 2016.

The Belgium global has had a really bad run of form for nearly 18 months now, with confidence lacking in front of goal not being helped by a raft of injuries.

"The tabloids were always claiming that he was arrogant".

The manager was also delighted with Mohamed Salah, whose goal he described as being one of the best goals he had seen live, declaring it "blew me away".

'Chelsea got more than double the price they paid for me, and I got into a much better situation at Wolfsburg'.

"We didn't say, Bobby plays against Jorginho, for example. They said you were hard".

"Of course, when you read this stuff about yourself, you think, 'Me? The injuries and the matches that I've missed have been extremely hard for me, mentally", he said.

"But with four games in 10 days you can't play the same eleven players". You can't help it. We had a bit of a conversation about me going back out on loan. What's the story here?

However, it didn't take long for Sterling to change De Bruyne's opinion of him, with the Belgian admitting his teammate is "one of the nicest, most humble guys in football". I was on the bench, and I never really got a chance again. I want to play football. I really got to know Raheem, and I recognized what a smart and genuine person he is. He couldn't be more different. But you're actually quite amusing'.

He said: "Pep and I share a similar mentality".

"I said: "What? Why?' and she said: 'Because of who you are".

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