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Aaron Mooy v Kevin De Bruyne: The key battle in Huddersfield v Manchester City
Last Updated: 26/11/17 4:14pm
We examine the key battle when Huddersfield face Manchester City on Super Sunday.
Huddersfield will look to become the first team to prevent Pep Guardiola's title-favourites from taking three points since August when Manchester City visit the John Smith's Stadium.
The key battle is likely to come in midfield, where former City player Aaron Mooy is Huddersfield's main man. He will have his hands full trying to stifle the threat of the in-form Kevin De Bruyne.
The Belgian is on a remarkable run of 23 appearances without losing for either club or country. Since featuring in the FA Cup semi-final defeat against Arsenal in April, De Bruyne has played in 20 wins and three draws, while his recent form in the Premier League has been outstanding.
Kevin de Bruyne in the Premier League since September 1
|% of minutes played||93%|
De Bruyne's numbers stack up impressively. His tally of six assists is only bettered by team-mate David Silva. Last season, De Bruyne recorded a City record of 18 Premier League assists, and it would be no surprise if it was broken again this season given the starts that he, Silva, and Leroy Sane - also on six assists - have made.
Where does Kevin De Buryne rank this season?
|PL 2017/18||Total||PL rank|
|Goals & assists||9||6th=|
|Chances created from set pieces||16||1st=|
|Passes in opp. half||655||2nd|
|Passes in final third||415||2nd|
With De Bruyne and company in such magnificent form, it is easy to understand why Huddersfield's Mooy failed to make the breakthrough after his move to the Etihad Stadium in 2016.
The 27-year-old was signed from Melbourne City in June 2016, but loaned to Huddersfield soon afterwards. He played a key role in promotion from the Championship last season before making the move permanent in June this year.
His two Premier League goals so far have been notable - against Newcastle in August he scored Huddersfield's first home goal in the top division since 1972, and last month he opened the scoring in the win over Manchester United, inflicting the first defeat of the Premier League season on Jose Mourinho's side.
If Huddersfield are to do the same to United's city rivals, the Australian will be crucial.
Aaron Mooy's importance to Huddersfield
|PL 2017/18||Total||Team rank|
|Goals & assists||3||1st|
|Passes in opp. half||430||1st|
He is the only Huddersfield player to have both scored and assisted goals in the Premier League, while his tally of 20 chances created this season is more than double that of any team-mate.
Not only has he made important attacking contributions, but Mooy is also the main Terrier when it comes to recovering possession. In fact, only two players have attempted more tackles across the division this season.
Most tackles in the Premier League 2017/18
|P Zabaleta||West Ham||37|
If De Bruyne is to be contained on Sunday and Huddersfield are to achieve an impressive Manchester double, that tenacious tackling from Mooy is likely to feature heavily in this key battle.
Watch Huddersfield v Manchester City live on Sky Sports Premier League HD from 3.30pm on Sunday