Manchester City star Kevin De Bruyne is widely regarded as one of the best footballers in the world.
His incredible vision, passing ability, and versatility have made him a key figure for Manchester City and the Belgian national team.
However, it’s intriguing to note that the road to stardom for De Bruyne had a few bumps along the way, including a time when he was perceived as a ‘sulking’ presence in training.
John Obi-Mikel’s recent claims about De Bruyne’s behaviour during his Chelsea days have shed light on an interesting chapter in the midfielder’s career.
In a recent interview, former Chelsea midfielder John Obi-Mikel made some revealing comments about Kevin De Bruyne’s time at Chelsea.
According to Obi-Mikel, De Bruyne was ‘not the best trainer’ during his tenure at Stamford Bridge. The Belgian international, who joined Chelsea in January 2012, struggled to make a lasting impact under then-manager Jose Mourinho.
Obi-Mikel described De Bruyne as a player who often had his head down, appeared angry, and sulked during training sessions.
Obi-Mikel likened De Bruyne’s behaviour to that of an excluded child on the playground. It’s a striking analogy that paints a vivid picture of the midfielder’s state of mind during that period.
De Bruyne’s demeanour was reflective of his frustration at not getting enough playing time and struggling to adapt to the demanding environment of the Premier League.
One of the most eye-catching revelations from Obi-Mikel’s interview was the incident involving Samuel Eto’o.
The Cameroonian striker, known for his fiery personality and competitive spirit, clashed with De Bruyne during a training session.
The altercation reportedly stemmed from De Bruyne’s perceived lack of effort on the pitch.
Eto’o, a seasoned veteran with a strong work ethic, demanded more from the young Belgian, leading to a heated exchange between the two players.
Obi-Mikel also pointed out that Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho had a no-nonsense approach during his time at the club.
Mourinho was known for his strict managerial style, and he didn’t hesitate to challenge his players, regardless of their status. If a player wasn’t performing or putting in the effort in training, Mourinho would not hesitate to address the issue.
Fast forward to the present day, and Kevin De Bruyne has transformed into one of the most influential and successful midfielders in world football.
His move to Wolfsburg in 2014 marked a turning point in his career, where he had the opportunity to be the central figure for a team and develop his skills further.
This experience prepared him for his return to the Premier League with Manchester City in 2015, where he has since become a vital cog in Pep Guardiola’s well-oiled machine.