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Prior to that, Maxwel Cornet had pounced to give Lyon the advantage, while the French side cut free in the last 11 minutes, countering effectively to score twice through substitute Moussa Dembele to put the match out of reach.
It was not, however, the goal scorers who impressed De Bruyne the most.
“I don’t watch a lot of French football,” De Bruyne admitted to RMC.“But if I had to pick it one name, for me it would be Houssem Aouar. Today, he played a good game.”
Aouar has been linked with a potential move to City in the past, with his technical attributes thought to be attractive to Guardiola’s style, and indeed his long-term future at boyhood club Lyon is not assured as they will not play European football next season unless a French side wins the Champions League.
Meanwhile, reports in France suggest that Arsenal have made an offer for him in the last week, though Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas judged it insufficient, with the Gunners offering Matteo Guendouzi as part of the deal.
The 22-year-old, who is as yet uncapped for France, has been a lynchpin for OL this season, featuring on 40 occasions, while contributing nine goals and 10 assists.
He made his debut as Lyon made a run to the semi-finals of the Europa League in 2016-17, netting in an 11-2 aggregate victory over Alkmaar, and he has since gone on to feature on 136 occasions for the first team.