Kevin de Bruyne isn’t a bad footballer, is he? The Manchester City midfielder – who signed from VfL Wolfsburg for an estimated fee of £55 million last summer – made his return to the side in April after spending a number of months on the sidelines. And since he regained his place in Manuel Pellegrini’s starting line-up, he’s been an inspiration and has replaced David Silva as the focal point of City’s potent attack.
This summer, De Bruyne will join his Belgium team-mates as they look to win the European Championship for the first time. As of April 17th, Belgium are priced at 11/1 in Euro 2016 odds and De Bruyne will be looking to make a key impact on the tournament this summer. The City star is in great form and club team-mate Vincent Kompany will also try to help Marc Wilmots’ side go all the way to the final on July 10th.
And if anyone is going to be the difference for Belgium in this summer’s competition, it’s De Bruyne. Eden Hazard and Kevin Mirallas are both lacking confidence right now while Marouane Fellaini has been in and out of the Manchester United side. The City star may be Belgium’s brightest spark and Wilmots may rely heavily on his ability to create opportunities in attack.
It could be argued that the former Chelsea midfielder is the best attacking midfielder in the world right now. De Bruyne almost single-handedly led Manuel Pellegrini’s men past Paris Saint-Germain in the quarter-finals of the Champions League and Belgium may head into the Euros with two newly-crowned Champions League winners in their ranks but they’ll have to get past an exceptional Real Madrid side to achieve this goal.
Many football fans will already be looking forward to this summer’s competition, however, and Belgium must be regarded as one of the fancied sides despite their difficult group stage. Belgium were drawn into the ‘Pool of Death’ along with Italy, the Republic of Ireland and Sweden but Wilmots’ men will believe they can reach the latter stages of the tournament at the very least. From there, who knows… it’s all about the luck of the draw.
And with De Bruyne in the side, anything can happen. Belgium have plenty of talent in their ranks and Wilmots will already have a general idea as to which players will make his starting line-up. If the Belgium boss gets his selection right, there’s absolutely no reason why the Red Devils cannot win the trophy this summer. With the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Dries Mertens and De Bruyne, they should score lots of goals at the very least.
Belgium will be there or thereabouts this summer and De Bruyne’s influence on the squad will be crucial to their chances of success. Can Wilmots’ men defy the odds and pip World Cup winners Germany and home nation France to the crown? Potentially. If they play at their best, they have enough nous and experience to lift the title this summer.