Manchester City legend Colin Bell has branded David Silva as “irreplaceable” and says the Spaniard could walk into any team in the club’s history.
Silva has shone since arriving in the Premier League from Valencia in 2010, scoring 34 goals in 167 appearances for City – helping them to two league titles.
His creative flair, eye for a pass and composure in possession set Silva out in City’s squad, and Bell says those qualities make him an integral part of Manuel Pellegrini’s side.
“David Silva would walk into any City team,” he told the club’s official website. “He is in my personal greatest all-time XI and is just fantastic to watch.
“When he’s on the ball, he makes the whole team tick and we don’t look the same side without him. He has an incredible awareness and is the perfect player for the modern game.
“Silva glides around the pitch and is an integral part of our recent successes and he is a genuine pleasure to watch.
“His movement, vision and intelligence are as good as I’ve seen and I hope he continues to grace the City team for many more years to come.”
Injuries have meant the Spaniard has been more of a peripheral figure this season, the 29-year-old only making five league starts since the opening weekend of the campaign.
He added: “We’ve invested a lot of money into the team in recent years but for me, Silva and Sergio Aguero are irreplaceable in my opinion.
“We have a terrific squad of players, but if you take those two out of the equation, we lose some of our cutting edge so I hope they are both back in the team as quickly as possible.”