Football

Bernardo Silva will not leave Man City as long as I’m in charge

Bernardo Silva will not leave Man City as long as I’m in charge

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has dismissed the possibility that Bernardo Silva could leave the club while he is in charge.

Silva, 23, has enjoyed a brilliant debut season in English football, lifting the Premier League title and the League Cup, while also reaching the Champions League quarter-final.

And while the Portuguese international has often found playing time scarce, such is the talent and ability of City’s attacking line-up, Guardiola has nonetheless rubbished rumours linking the star away from the Etihad Stadium.

Silva has been on the periphery of first-team action with the likes of Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling flourishing under the guidance of the Catalan coach this season, but Guardiola believes Silva “connects perfectly” with his tactical philosophy.

“When we sign a player we never have the certainty it is going to work but I think we got it right,” he told reporters, according to the Manchester Evening News.

“As long as I’m a coach at Manchester City he’s not going to go anywhere.

“Maybe he didn’t play as much as we wanted for him this season but he’s been an amazing part of the team and its success.

“He has an amazing quality. He connects perfectly with the way we want to play in this team.

“As a person, I always enjoy working with good people and he’s one of them. He has amazing relations with his teammates, coaches, everyone. It is difficult to find anyone better in that than Bernardo Silva.

“I’m really happy with his season and hopefully next season will be even better.”

Should Silva start?

There can be no denying that the impact of Sterling and Sane this season has been formidable, with both wingers collectively scoring 28 goals between them and assisting their teammates on 26 occasions in the league.

But considering Silva’s limited playing time, the 23-year-old makes a strong case to start more matches, given his overall averages this season.

Given that Silva has played 1,000 less minutes than Sterling this season and around 600 less than Sane, his statistical total averages show that he could make a larger impact than both players if he were given more time on the pitch.

His successful take-on percentage (80.56%), shot accuracy (59%) and pass completion (87%) are all better than that of Sterling and Sane, meaning he could perhaps replicate the form of both players, if not better them next season.

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