The Manchester City and Belgium midfielder is one of three nominees for the 2020/21 UEFA Men's Player of the Year award
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Kevin De Bruyne is on the three-man shortlist for the 2020/21 UEFA Men's Player of the Year award. UEFA.com analyses why he is in the running alongside Jorginho and N'Golo Kanté.
Why he was nominated
The Belgian playmaker was once again key to Manchester City's success in 2020/21, as he helped Josep Guardiola's men recover from an uncharacteristically slow start to scoop a third league title in four seasons.
The creative midfielder was also a driving force behind the Cityzens' run to a first ever UEFA Champions League final, supplying four assists and scoring three goals. De Bruyne's evening in the showpiece was cut short by injury – will the 30-year-old go one better this term?
2020/21 in numbers
Premier League winner, English League Cup winner, UEFA Champions League runner-up, PFA Players' Player of the Year
UEFA Champions League
Player of the Match awards (KOs): 3
UEFA EURO 2020
Star of the Match awards: 1
Top three performances
Paris 1-2 Manchester City
With City trailing to Marquinhos' header at the break, De Bruyne took the semi-final first leg by the scruff of the neck. His cross-shot veered inside the far post and Riyad Mahrez soon made it 2-1. "He was a hive of activity in the City midfield," said Patrick Vieira: praise from Caesar.
Dortmund 1-2 Manchester City
"He scored and was at the centre of everything good for City, with and without the ball," said Belgium boss Roberto Martínez, watching this quarter-final first leg in his role as UEFA technical observer. "He brought purpose to City's play, intent and threat, with his constant and energetic attacking play."
Denmark 1-2 Belgium
The Red Devils' EURO 2020 hopes were in the balance when De Bruyne, still nursing a facial injury, was introduced at half-time tasked with inspiring a comeback from 1-0 down. He didn't disappoint, setting up Thorgan Hazard for an equaliser before a powerful low finish of his own completed a dazzling team move.
Last year's winner
Robert Lewandowski won the 2019/20 UEFA Men's Player of the Year award. The Bayern striker scored in every game en route to the UEFA Champions League final in Lisbon, picking up 15 goals and six assists as well as the trophy he had coveted for so long. He also hit 34 goals in 31 Bundesliga matches and six in five German Cup games.