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Media Watch

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Mirror: Majestic De Bruyne's latest masterclass

Last-day transfer deadline day drama, poor tackles and City coast to victory – that’s the meat of today’s media round-up.

The Blues reportedly decided not to pursue Riyad Mahrez after being priced out of a deal for the Foxes talisman, while Eliaquim Mangala’s loan move to Everton just about got over the line.

But we’ll start with the reaction to yet another magnificent 90 minutes from a player who is a privilege to watch.

The Mirror wax lyrical about Kevin De Bruyne’s latest masterclass – and why not?

Here’s what Andy Dunn has to say: “Wonderful goal, check. Beautiful assist, check. Outrageous near-miss from the halfway line, check.

“Kevin De Bruyne’s majesty is breaking new ground with each passing game.

The Premier League title is Manchester City’s, the Player of the Year award is De Bruyne’s.


CENTURY: ...Before slotting home for City's 100th goal of the campaign.



City 3-0 West Brom: Short highlights

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“One moment summed up his imperious brilliance.

“Leading only through Fernandinho’s first half goal, there was just a slight hint of twitchiness around the Etihad just over 20 minutes to go.

“Away broke City, away broke De Bryune, evading James McClean’s heinous attempt to halt his progress, exchanging passes with Raheem Sterling and rolling in City’s second.

“McClean was booked as City’s players gathered to pay homage to De Bruyne.

“No wonder. City are a speck on the horizon, De Bruyne is a distance clear of anyone else’s form right now.

“It was yet another display, the magnificence of which is now par for the course.

“If anyone deserved the standing ovation he got from all corners, it is De Bruyne.

“Some talent, some player.”

Nobody will argue with that.

Meanwhile, France24 pick up on Pep’s post-match assertions that his players continue to be the target of some crude challenges – challenges that are rarely meted with the punishment they perhaps deserve.

They report: “Guardiola was also unhappy with a late lunge by James McClean on Kevin De Bruyne, which earned the West Brom man a yellow card, and an Allan Nyom foul on Kyle Walker.


LUCKY ESCAPE: Kevin De Bruyne survives a reckless challenge from West Brom's James McClean_


'Poor challenge'

“But Albion manager Alan Pardew believed Guardiola’s weekend comments had provoked City supporters into trying to put pressure on referee Bobby Madley in a bid to get him to hand out harsher treatment to the visitors than might otherwise have been the case.

‘He's a winger and in desperate situations wingers can make poor challenges. It was a poor challenge, make no mistake about that? said Pardew of Phillips’s challenge.

‘I thought Pep's comments at the weekend affected the crowd. Every challenge, they were saying 'you’re not protecting our players, referee!?’.

‘There were a few songs sung about him, but I actually thought he (Madley) had a decent game.’

On to the transfer deals that did and didn’t happen on deadline day, beginning with one of yesterday’s biggest breaking stories with City deciding to walk away from a deal for Leicester City’s Mahrez.

Sky Sports’ report focuses on Pep’s after-match comments as they write: “Speaking to Sky Sports after Man City's 3-0 win over West Brom, Guardiola said: ‘He's a Leicester player. Everybody knows we were trying but we cannot afford, in this moment, this amount of what they are asking. I understand perfectly.

‘We tried to do it in the summertime, we tried to do it now, but like summer, they locked the door and we can go to the summer and holidays.

‘It was not possible. With [Aymeric] Laporte yes, with the other one no. We are going to see what happens in the summer.’


COMPOSURE: Aymeric Laporte made a solid start to his City debut.



Aymeric Laporte reflects on impressive City debut

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Finally, a deal that did go through was Eliaquim Mangala’s loan move to Everton.

The French defender has performed admirably when called up on this season for the Blues, but the arrival of Aymeric Laporte would appear to have reduced his chances of first team action at the Etihad.

ESPN write: “Manchester City defender Eliaquim Mangala has completed his loan move to Everton for the rest of the season, subject to Premier League clearance.

“The 26-year-old has struggled to live up to his lofty price tag since arriving at the Etihad Stadium from Porto in 2014.

“Mangala spent last term on loan at Valencia and made 15 appearances in all competitions for City this season.

“However, the club-record arrival of Athletic Bilbao defender Aymeric Laporte has seen him join Everton for the remainder of the campaign subject to clearance.

‘I am thrilled to have the opportunity to play for Everton,’ defender Mangala said.

‘I cannot wait to pull on the royal blue jersey for the first time and give my all for the supporters.’

Best of luck to Elia and follow his fortunes in Loan Watch each week.

That’s all for today!

Men's Team

Eliaquim Mangala loaned to Everton

Eliaquim Mangala

Defender Eliaqium Mangala has joined Everton on loan until the end of the season, subject to Premier League clearance.

The French centre-back, who has made 15 appearances for City in the 2017/18 campaign, will now spend the rest of the season with the Toffees.

Men's Team

Pep sounds salute to ton-up City

​PEP WATCH: The manager observes from the touchline.

Pep Guardiola sounded a special salute to his Manchester City players after his side opened up a 15-point gap at the top of the Premier League with a 3-0 win over West Brom.

Guardiola hails free-scoring City as club passes 100-goal tally for the season

Picture Special

Laporte gets stuck in!