KEVIN DE BRUYNE. Of course it was.

It was simply inevitable – absolutely nailed on – exactly what would happen once Pep Guardiola told his number 17 to get changed.

Only just back from a five-month injury, at least the Belgian could have at least taken a few weeks to get back to his very best and give everyone some hope of a dramatic title race lasting until the end of the season.

Instead, De Bruyne took a matter of minutes and all of a sudden, the prospect of a fourth successive City title being secured by mid-April looks a depressing possibility.

The only surprise was that De Bruyne, a 69th minute substitute for Bernardo Silva, failed to stick a free-kick into the top corner with his first touch within seconds of arrival.

The next time De Bruyne had control of the ball, Newcastle’s midfield thought it would be a good idea to give him a free run on goal and he literally passed the ball into the bottom left corner to level.

And then, unbelievably, just a few seconds into stoppage time, De Bruyne casually delivered an extraordinary right-footed ball over the top of the home defence for fellow sub Oscar Bobb to show great composure to grab the winner. – The Sun

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