Pep Guardiola has described David Silva as a “special guy” and outlined the Spaniard’s importance to his Manchester City team.
City have won their last 24 matches in which Silva has been involved, either as a member of the starting XI, or after coming on as a substitute.
And speaking about the Spanish play-maker’s excellent record, City boss Guardiola said: “That’s why he’s playing every time!
“It’s a good record, normally when David plays, you know you are a good team. He’s a special guy.
“David is so important but we try to make all the players feel they are so important.
“But he knows, alone, he cannot do it. So we try to make a good team, a good team spirit with everyone involved, knowing with and without the ball what we have to do.
“But, we cannot deny, David has had seven or eight years here – that’s a lot of games, a lot of experience. He has a huge personality to play, especially in the bad moments.
“The difference in the top players is, in the difficult games, they make a step forward and David is one of them.”
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Silva missed four games in December after the premature birth of his son and may need to miss more.
And the club are prepared to give the 32-year-old as much time as he needs.
Guardiola added: “When he is able to play, he plays. When it is not possible, because of his son, we rest him.
“The most important thing is his son in that moment, and his wife and family.”
On Sunday, City compete in the FA Cup, as they travel to Cardiff, who remain strong contenders for promotion to the Premier League.