Kevin De Bruyne has revealed that his preconception of team-mate, Raheem Sterling, before they had met at Manchester City was that the winger may have been a ‘d***head’.
De Bruyne joined City in 2015 after lighting up the Bundesliga with Wolfsburg, and he has admitted the media’s portrayal of Sterling at the time, led to him believing that the 24-year-old was an overly flamboyant character.
The Belgium midfielder has however now stressed how unfairly Sterling has been treated, and how their relationship at City has opened his eyed to how much of a ‘smart and genuine person’ the former Liverpool player is.
De Bruyne told the Players Tribune: ‘Before I came to Manchester City, I didn’t really know what to make of this Raheem Sterling guy,’
‘I had never met him, and from what I’d read about him in the English press, I thought he was going to be a very different character.’
‘I didn’t think he’d be a bad guy, really. But the tabloids were always claiming that he was arrogant. So, I guess I thought he’d be… what do the English call it? A bit of a d***head, maybe?’
‘But over time, I got closer to Raheem, because our sons were born around the same time, so they would always play together. I really got to know Raheem, and I recognised what a smart and genuine person he is.
‘He couldn’t be more different from what the tabloids were saying. This is the real truth: Raheem is one of the nicest, most humble guys I’ve met in football.’