Manchester City remains in the driver’s seat as Pep Guardiola’s men look to hunt down another Premier League title, giving them four in the last five years as they took a 3-1 lead into the dressing room at the Molineux against Bruno Lage’s Wolves thanks to Belgian superstar Kevin De Bruyne.
With Liverpool securing a vital 2-1 comeback win at Aston Villa last night which saw them draw level with their league rivals on 86-points, City needed a response tonight and have thus far delivered after De Bruyne bagged a scintillating first-half hat-trick.
It was the first Premier League hat-trick (2nd overall) for the Belgian international icon, who has been in fine form once again for City this season, and now is the club’s leading goalscorer in the Premier League this term after securing his twelfth, thirteenth, and fourteenth goals of the campaign.
24 – Kevin De Bruyne’s hat-trick within 24 minutes is the third earliest scored from the start of a match in Premier League history, after Sadio Mane v Aston Villa in May 2015 (16 mins) and Dwight Yorke v Arsenal in February 2001 (22). Incredible. pic.twitter.com/znqAveJjpy
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) May 11, 2022
In doing so, his three-goal haul tonight became the third-fastest hat-trick of the Premier League era according to Opta after finding the back of the net all three times by the 24th-minute. Only Sadio Mané (16-minutes) and Dwight Yorke (22-minutes) scored a hat-trick in quicker fashion since the rebranding of the top flight of English football.
Those three goals potentially carry the weight of the entire Premier League season on their shoulders as well, but his first-half effort in front of goal also saw him reach the personal milestone of hitting the 200-mark for goal contributions across all competitions for City, needing just 305-appearances to achieve that mark.
Now sitting on 84-goals and adding a superb 116-assists, De Bruyne continues to prove that he is one of the biggest attacking threats in world football with his ability to seamlessly transition from provider to goal-getter.