Guardiola hails 'legend' Aguero after four-goal show

Predicted Man City XI vs Basel

Predicted Man City XI vs Basel

Following another midfield masterclass from the Belgian, Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola was asked if De Bruyne had elevated himself to the level of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo - and could even break their decade-long stranglehold on the Ballon d'Or. "It's not one game, it's all the season - every three days - playing that way".

Kevin de Bruyne recorded his 12th, 13th and 14th assists of the season on Saturday afternoon, topping the charts when it comes to handing the likes of Sergio Aguero easy tap-ins from six yards.

Basel will feel unlucky that they drew Manchester City but they will know that if they are to cause an upset, they will need to win at home.

"The way he plays it's hard to find one [like him] in Europe". Of course. You have to be there in the latter stages.

"At the end, if you get an individual honor, it is handsome", he said. He took advantage of two more fine De Bruyne passes and an errant clearance from Leicester 'keeper Kasper Schmeichel for his hat-trick.

That is more than anyone in Europe's top five leagues - including Guardiola's old favourite Messi.

Champions-elect Man City looked strangely out of sorts during the first 45 minutes of their English Premier League clash with Leicester at the Etihad, reported Reuters, but the Foxes were no match for their hosts once Aguero found his groove.

"The next step forward from last season is to achieve the quarter-finals".

"Against Basel we try to make two good games and do it better than last season - hopefully this time we can go through".

With all that in mind, I think that Manchester City will win this game and that they will win with some ease.

The first hurdle is this month's Carabao Cup clash against Arsenal and the City chief admits he may have to rotate his players, especially this weekend's four-goal hero Sergio Aguero.

"To be fair, when I am busy playing football I don't care (about that)", said De Bruyne.

With the pair ably backed by a sensational supporting cast, including Leroy Sane, David Silva, Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus, City have scored 20 more goals than the next-best attacking side, Liverpool, and amassed 16 points more than city rivals United, in second place. "What happens after is an extra", he told reporters. I'm doing what I have to do. "I am very pleased with the way everything is going. It's something you reflect on after you get something like that".