On 30 June 2010, Manchester City announced that they had reached an agreement with Valencia over the transfer of Silva and that he would join the club on a four-year deal, prior to the start of the 2010–11 season.

On July 14, 2010, Manchester City completed the signing, and Silva was awarded the number 21 shirt, the same number he wore for Valencia, and when playing for Spain.

Manchester City had previously tried to sign Silva and his Valencia teammate David Villa in 2008, but were put off when Valencia quoted a £135 million combined price tag on both players.

Silva arrived in City as a World Champion and represented the team, which was enjoying an absolute purple-patch. Silva was one of the vital cogs of that great Spanish side of 2008-2012 and by many, he was equally valued as the likes of Anders Iniesta, Xavi, David Villa, Carlos Puyol, Sergio Ramos, and Xabi Alonso.

City manager at that time, Roberto Mancini, mainly deployed Silva as a winger and later in a trequartista role in his first season.

Silva made his Premier League debut on August 14, 2010, in a 0–0 draw against Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane. He scored his first goal for the club a month later – eight minutes into the Europa League group match against Red Bull Salzburg.

The following month, he scored his first league goal in a game against Blackpool, netting City’s third goal in a 3–2 away win.

In a 3–1 home win in the Europa League against Lech Poznań, he set up two goals for Emmanuel Adebayor. He made another assist slipping through Adam Johnson for Manchester City’s third in a 3–1 away win against West Ham United.

Erroneous media reports emerged suggesting Silva could return to Spain and cited homesickness and difficulty to adapt to the English game. His performances, however, impressed City supporters and earned him three consecutive Manchester City Player of the Month awards from October to December 2010.

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In February 2011, he was credited for the equalizing goal in the 2–1 loss to rivals Manchester United when an Edin Dzeko shot deflected off his back and into the net. In March, he scored from 20 yards out in an FA Cup win against Aston Villa.

Three days later, he scored the only goal in Manchester City’s win against Wigan Athletic. Silva netted the third goal in City’s 5–0 rout of Sunderland on 3 April. His assist to Yaya Toure against Everton at Goodison Park took Silva to 15 assists in all competitions for the season.

Following his debut season in the Premier League, Silva emerged as one of the league’s finest playmakers. Carlos Tevez lauded him as “the best signing we [Manchester City] have made.

During the 2011-12 season, Silva was at his peak.

He was among score-sheets in a 4-0 thrashing against Swansea City. In the following week, he scored again vs. Bolton Wanders, which earned him a back-to-back Man of the Match award.

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Silva then set up two of Sergio Aguero’s three goals in City’s second home game against Wigan Athletic. After a series of magnificent displays from Silva, City boss Roberto Mancini compared him to fellow Spain internationals Xavi and Andrés Iniesta and said that Silva is “one of the best players in the world”.

On October 1, 2011, Silva was awarded the Premier League Player of the Month for his outstanding performances, making it the first time ever that two Manchester City players have won the award in back-to-back months with Edin Dzeko winning it the month before.

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In the first Manchester Derby of the season at Old Trafford, Manchester City won 6–1, with Silva proving, yet again, to be instrumental in the Manchester City attack, scoring the fifth goal, setting up Edin Dzeko’s second with a chested volley pass through the United defense, and participating in the first two goals with excellent passing to James Milner to assist Mario Balotelli.

In an interview with a Spanish radio station in 2011, Silva revealed that he turned down Barcelona and Real Madrid so he could sign for City and that he wants to stay at the club for years.

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He commented, “Madrid and Barcelona are great teams, but I’m happy here and I would like to stay here for many years”.

Former City and England defender Earl Barrett said that Silva is almost impossible to stop due to his ability to create space and Andy Cole, who mostly played for Manchester United, has stated that Silva “is a joy to watch”.

Silva scored a goal in City’s 3–2 away win against Queens Park Rangers on 5 November and also scored in City’s 1–0 home win against Arsenal on 18 December.

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He also contributed by scoring the fourth goal in City’s 4–0 win against West Bromwich Albion on 11 April 2012.

In addition to winning his first Premier League medal with Manchester City, he also finished the season on top of the assists table with 15 assists to his name and was one of four City players who made it in the PFA’s Premier League Team of the Year.

On 17 September 2012, Silva signed a new five-year deal at City, committing himself to the Etihad Stadium until 2017.

He injured himself playing for Spain, which meant he had to miss four games for Manchester City.

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On November 11, he provided the crucial assist, a lofted through-ball, to striker Edin Dzeko, who converted in the 88th minute to steal a 2–1 victory over Tottenham Hotspur. His first league goal of the season came in a 5–0 thrashing of Aston Villa at home in the very next league match, on November 17.

On January 19, 2013, Silva scored twice against Fulham at home in a 2–0 win. On 9 March, he scored the fifth and final goal in Manchester City’s 5–0 win against Barnsley at the City of Manchester Stadium in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, sealing progression to the semi-finals. He finished the season with four goals and ten assists in 32 league appearances for a City squad that finished runners-up to city rivals Manchester United for the Premier League title.

On August 19, 2013, Silva scored Manchester City’s opening goal of the 2013–14 Premier League season in a 4–0 win against Newcastle United at the City of Manchester Stadium.

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On 10 December 2013, he scored his first Champions League goal of the season in a 3–2 win at champions Bayern Munich.

He was named Manchester City’s Player of the Month for March 2014, after scoring in away matches against Hull City and Arsenal.

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On August 10, Silva played in the 2014 FA Community Shield, a match City lost 3–0 to Arsenal.

Two days later, he signed a five-year contract extension with City.

Like the previous season, on 17 August, Silva scored Manchester City’s opening goal of the 2014–15 Premier League season in a 2–0 away win against Newcastle United. Silva then scored against West Brom on Boxing Day.

On February 21, 2015, Silva scored a brace against Newcastle United in a 5–0 win.

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He won the Etihad Player of the Month award for his performances in February.

On 4 March, Silva scored in 1–0 win against Leicester City to take him to ten league goals in a season for the first time in his career.

Jamie Redknapp described him as a “maestro” for his performances for City, while his teammate Edin Džeko called him “the best player in the Premier League”.

On April 19, in a 2–0 victory over West Ham, Silva was caught in the face by the elbow of Cheikhou Kouyaté, requiring eight minutes of treatment before being substituted for Samir Nasri.

Tests confirmed that he had not fractured his cheekbone.

On May 10, Silva scored a goal in City’s 6–0 win over Queens Park Rangers, which resulted in the latter’s relegation.

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In the opening match of the Premier League season, in a 0–3 win at West Brom, Silva delivered a performance his manager Manuel Pellegrini labeled “unbelievable.”

As well as assisting the team’s third goal, Silva was later credited with the first goal. After contributing another three assists for the team in August (in wins against Chelsea and Watford), Silva was nominated for both of the Manchester City and Premier League Player of the Month Awards for August, winning the former.

Silva was injured for most of October and November after picking up an ankle injury, while playing for Spain on October 9.

He made his return, as a 75th-minute substitute, in a 3–1 league defeat of Southampton on 28 November.

He netted the opener in the last UEFA Champions League group stage match on 8 December, in a 4–2 home defeat of Borussia Mönchengladbach, which resulted in Manchester City topping their group for the first time.

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Silva provided another three assists in home victories against Tyne-Wear rivals Newcastle United and Sunderland.

In a 4–0 home league win against Crystal Palace on 16 January 2016, Silva scored one, set-up another two goals, and played a key pass in the remaining goal.

Silva started the 2016 Football League Cup Final on 28 February, as Manchester City defeated Liverpool 3–1 on penalties, winning his second League Cup with the club.

He claimed another brace of assists in a 4–0 home defeat of Aston Villa six days later.

After scoring 8 goals in 44 appearances and providing numerous assists, Silva won his first Etihad Player of the Season award for his outstanding contribution, as voted for by Manchester City fans.

Silva started the 2017–18 season with yet another display of finesse, providing eight Premier League assists in 14 appearances, which was the highest total for any player in Europe’s top five leagues.

On November 30, 2017, Silva signed a one-year contract extension with Manchester City keeping him at the club until 2020.

On September 15, 2018, in a 3–0 home win over Fulham, Silva scored his 50th Premier League goal in his 253rd appearance in the competition, also making his 350th appearance for Manchester City in the same match.

Following the departure of Vincent Kompany in 2019, Silva inherited the club captaincy.

On 26 June 2019, Silva announced that he would leave Manchester City at the end of the 2019–20 season.

Today, he would be playing his last game for City in the Premier League.

10 years of brilliance would come to an end.

Silva has picked up 14 trophies during his time at City, including four Premier League titles, and he is widely regarded as one of the most talented midfielders to have ever graced the English game.

He has contributed 77 goals to the club’s cause in 433 appearances in total, along with a staggering 140 assists, and has once again been a fixture in Guardiola’s set-up throughout the 2019-20 campaign.

The City manager Pep Guardiola said that Silva’s place in City’s hall of fame has long been assured, given his huge influence in the early stages of a major revolution at the Etihad.

When asked to summarise a veteran performer’s impact at City over the past decade, the Spanish head coach told the club’s official website: “Extraordinary! The number of games, the huge quality in the games he played, the titles he helped win…he’s alongside five or six others who made this Club what it is now. And this club will always be grateful.”

That sums it up about Silva – the greatest ever midfielder played for City.

 

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