David Silva’s form for Manchester City this season is continuing to establish him as one of Spain’s greatest players, according to ex-Liverpool and Barcelona forward Luis Garcia.
City are 15 points clear at the top of the Premier League following an on-going English record of 18 consecutive league wins.
Silva and Kevin De Bruyne have operated as the creative heart of Pep Guardiola’s side and Garcia is not surprised by the level of performances produced by his 31-year-old countryman, who penned a contract extension at the Etihad Stadium last month.
Capped 118 times by Spain and fourth on his country’s all-time international goals list with 35, Silva is set to have a vital role to play as Julen Lopetegui’s men bid for World Cup glory in Russia next year.
“David Silva is becoming one of the best Spanish players,” Garcia told Omnisport of the two-time European champion and 2010 World Cup winner.
“I’m not very impressed, only because I know just how good he is.
“Sometimes you look at him and say ‘oh wow, look what he has done’ because every single game he makes a different skill.
“We enjoy seeing him in the national team and we enjoy him every time. We are lucky he is doing well in the Premier League because we are going to use all that talent in the national team for our World Cup.
“I hope he keeps doing well and keeps improving.”
— David Silva (@21LVA) December 10, 2017
Silva has missed recent City matches for personal reasons but his team-mates’ form has stayed on track under Guardiola, who Garcia feels has proved the doubters wrong after an underwhelming debut season in England.
“People were talking about Pep Guardiola last year, that he couldn’t make that difference,” he said, speaking in Japan in his capacity as a LaLiga ambassador.
“This year he is showing he can impose his philosophy of playing in the Premier League. You watch Manchester City and every week it is 70 per cent possession and a ratio of three goals per game.
“Players who weren’t performing maybe at that level are becoming better and better. Raheem Sterling moved from Liverpool to Manchester City and struggled in the beginning. He is flying this year
“He’s got a secret in the way of training and understanding the players that he uses every time and it works every time.”
Turning towards his country’s campaign at Russia 2018, Garcia believes Spain are in a good place as the likes of Silva combine with emerging talents such as Saul Niguez and Marco Asensio in a richly gifted squad.
We already have rivals for a tournament that we face with responsibility, work and excitement. A big challenge in which we want to be ambitious and competitive. #WorldCupDraw pic.twitter.com/EEuB0Wn4rg
— Julen Lopetegui (@julenlopetegui) December 1, 2017
“The aim has to be the same. We’ve got the talent in our team to aim for the trophy and try to win it,” Garcia added, while acknowledging Spain face an acid test in the opening game of the tournament.
“It is a big game against Portugal – players who we all know, who know each other from their club teams. It is going to be a good game to see how Spain can arrive in this competition.
“I think we are in a good moment. The transition from 2014 to now has been good. New players are coming, they are showing that they are hungry to bring more trophies to the national team.
“That talent of the young players and the experience of the older players – [Lopetegui] has done a great job in the last couple of years.
“We’re excited with this national team, so hopefully we can do well.”
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