The brilliant Belgian midfielder has been in inspired form for the Premier League champions once more this term, with De Bruyne’s creativity, eye for goal and all-round consistency again marking him out as one of the game’s pre-eminent talents.
With the games now coming thick and fast for City, starting with Thursday’s big Premier League trip to Chelsea, De Bruyne’s influence is going to be even more important.
“Kevin is a very specific player in terms of when he has got the ball, you know that something can happen,” Bernardo detailed.
“If I have the ball or (Ilkay) Gundogan has the ball it is completely different.
“We all know that if the ball is on Kevin’s right foot especially, you have to go in behind and make movements.
“It is good to have these types of players, not only the players that control the rhythm of the game, but also these players that attack the final third and take more risks and (are) more decisive in the end product of the game.
“He is a very special player, and he has been doing well, not just this season but for a very, very long time.”
Thursday’s trip to Stamford Bridge concludes a busy festive schedule, with Pep Guardiola’s side currently in second place in the table behind leaders Arsenal.
The Gunners are in action again on Tuesday night when they play host to Newcastle United at the Emirates.
City suffered a frustrating afternoon last time out, being held to a 1-1 draw at home to Everton which allowed Mikel Arteta’s side to stretch their advantage to seven points.
And given the quality at the top end of the table, Bernardo admits there is precious little room for error looking ahead to the rest of the campaign.
“We haven’t reached the halfway mark of the Premier League, but it is getting difficult because if you keep slipping the gap can get bigger,” the Portuguese international observed.
“You see the way Arsenal are, their energy and hunger, it is a very dangerous team because you feel these things.
“The way they play, they are connected to the game and they are always alive. That is very dangerous when your rival is playing that way.
“We know that we have got a long way to go and we are not at the top so we are not happy with that.
“We just need to keep working, keep winning games, three points after three points, we will try to get there.”