Tuesday, 13 September 2011

David Silva – best player in the Premiership?

The Premier League has only just begun but already the leading candidate for player of the season has emerged at Manchester City, David Silva. The Spaniard, who is only starting his second season in England, is emerging as one of the best players not just in the league but in the whole of Europe.

The diminutive midfielder has been the most outstanding player thus far in my mind. Although his team-mate Sergio Aguero has stolen many of the headlines it is Silva, whose guile and technical ability is really something to behold. He is not a new player to have suddenly been unearthed though; his talent and ability has been honed and encouraged at Valencia where he played since he was 14. He became a first team regular in 2007 and it is almost unbelievable that Barcelona or Real Madrid did not sign him.

Thankfully for fans of Manchester City and the Premier League we will get to see him and his phenomenal left foot for the foreseeable future. He has the remarkable ability that many of the current Spanish players appear to have innately – the ability to find space. The way he glides around opponent’s penalty areas must give opposition managers heart failure as he drifts into yet another opening. He struggled initially with the physical demands of the league but is now fully acclimatised.

It is staggering that he is still not a regular starter for Spain but when you consider his rivals in those positions it suddenly becomes more apparent. However, a couple of years ago there was a case for suggesting that he was inferior to Fabregas, Iniesta and Xavi but now the gap is nowhere near as big. He would walk into any team in the world on current form and that includes the current Barcelona squad; he is simply too good not to pick.

Last season he became too isolated with Mancini opting to play too many defensive midfielders. He and Carlos Tevez had to create most of the chances and finish them; however, this season, with the new signings the side are playing with far more freedom. Indeed, last season Silva created 75% more chances for City than any other player at the club. The relationship between City’s front players is something to admire already and will only continue to improve. The likes of Aguero, Dzeko, Johnson, Nasri and Tevez just make the side so dangerous and with class like that they don’t need many chances.

It appeared that the Premier League was in a little trouble when it lost two of its World Class players to La Liga in recent years – Cristiano Ronaldo and Fabregas – but with Silva around the quality remains. Everyone is waiting for City to slip up and implode but with Silva in this form anything is possible this season. They begin their Champions League journey tomorrow night and it will be fascinating to see how they get on.

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