De Bruyne: Sterling showing his class

Consadole Sapporo draw 0-0 against Gamba Osaka in J-League

Manchester City's Kevin de Bruyne has hailed fellow forward Raheem Sterling's ability to bounce back from a very disappointing showing in Euro 2016.

The young forward has repaid Pep Guardiola's faith in him by putting in two stellar performances in City's first two matches of the new Premier League season – this despite drawing severe criticism for his role in England's disastrous Euro 2016 campaign.

Following his team's convincing 4 – 1 win over Stoke City on Saturday, teammate Kevin de Bruyne has highlighted the 21-year-old's contribution and questioned the English public's treatment of the player.

"He's a great player," de Bruyne told reporters. "I don't care what people say about him after last season or the Euros – these things happen, footballers have ups and downs. Hopefully he can continue [like] this for us now because he is very dangerous.

"I don't think he's really bothered about people talking about him," de Bruyne continued. "Everywhere he goes in England there are lots of fans of the opposing team shouting at him.

"I don't know why because he's a great English player, they should be supporting him instead of booing him. But that's the way it goes – at least City supporters will cheer him.

"I don't know how it goes in England when he plays for the national team. Obviously he's been criticised a lot in the last year but the way he's responding is great.

"You can talk as much as you want off the pitch but you have to show it on the pitch – and Raheem is doing just that."