Imagine a war getting concluded on a battlefield. There is that one soldier, who shot the main man down and emerged a hero, victorious, being cheered on by his compatriots and automatically finding himself in the limelight. Those are the kinds the people idolise and remember. But there is another soldier, who dictates the whole gameplay, playing with tactics in his head, foreseeing possible options, terminating the crucial targets and making way for his fellow members to proceed. He can open up space according to his own will. He will form mini maps and connect the dots, working on the back-end. He’ll prefer to operate silently, letting his teammates take the plaudits, but not go exactly unnoticed. His genius is appreciated for, maybe not always worshipped, but everyone feels honoured to be on the same side with this particular person.
He is none other than David Silva on the football pitch.
@BumperGraham Agreed! Kante is superb but if I were a PL manager, David Silva would be top of the list EVERY time
— Tom Dunn (@tomdunn26) March 30, 2017
At least the Spanish properly appreciate David Silva for the absolute football magician that he is. Here the media completely ignore him.
— Tim Smallbone (@TimSmallbone) March 28, 2017
There are few, in fact, who would despise him. Even the ones on the wrong side of a David-Silva show will hold a certain amount of respect for him. And why wouldn’t they? His movement on the pitch (with and without the ball), space manipulation skills, and unreal vision complemented with silky passes can’t go unnoticed for long. He has rightfully been named Merlin, after the legendary sorcerer, since his Valencia days.
David Silva could find space in a single bed with Gemma Collins, the man is unreal.
— Football Polls (@_Footypolls_) January 6, 2017
Left Foot – David Silva. That foot has created so many magical moments. Merlin is magic.
— Nepali Man© (@DeBruynization) March 31, 2017
— Manchester City News (@ManCityMEN) January 8, 2017
Recently scoring his 30th goal for Spain against France, he became Spain’s 4th top scorer of all-time, just 8 goals behind Fernando Torres.
Surprising, right? Since he is playmaker renowned for his goal-creation skills rather than goal-scoring. City fans can agree on how he hesitates while shooting the ball towards when he is in a position to score, and instead just passes it to a teammate nearby. And stats are proof of the fact that he has scored just 37 goals in the Premier League since joining the Citizens in 2010, which is just 7 more than what he has for Spain in half the number of appearances. This has happened because City have made a habit of effort in employing him as a playmaker rather than an attacker.
If David Silva could shoot, he would easily score 15-20 goals a season. Yesterday he had 2 very clear chances, but didn't take them..
— BlueCityZen (@BlueCitizen007) March 20, 2017
Spain’s all-time top goalscorers:
1. David Villa (59)
2. Raul (44)
3. Fernando Torres (38)
4. David Silva (30) pic.twitter.com/nvXCqTCA1S
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) March 28, 2017
David Silva has scored 30 international goals, as many as Alan Shearer & Kenny Dalglish, more than Ian Rush & Geoff Hurst.
— Richard Jolly (@RichJolly) March 28, 2017
He can be the integral spark needed to score a goal, as he makes goal-creation look comparatively easy. At Valencia, Silva had the most assists for 3 consecutive years and has created 62 Premier League goals for Manchester City since joining them, which is the most a player has contributed in this amount of time. The Spaniard has also created the most goal-scoring chances in this time period. One who has watched him play will assure you that his feint body turns, direction changes and delicious through-balls to teammates not visible on a tv screen never fails to amaze viewers. Youtube a David Silva video, and it will be accompanied with a title like ‘Little Genius’ and ‘Silent Assassin’, which goes to show how can control the back end so well. He rarely misplaces a pass too. The nervous and frustrating sighs in cases when he does misplace one, only goes to show the level of skill he has attained.
David Silva has registered more Premier League assists (62) than any other player since he joined Man City. ???????? pic.twitter.com/vyxTBnCZWQ
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) March 5, 2017
Off the top of my head David Silva’s assist to Dzeko in that 6-1 game. https://t.co/j2Bl9yCGIi
— Eze M. ???????? (@MrCotidie) July 2, 2016
David silva ???????????? your vision on the ball is sexual.
— Jordan Graham (@JordanGr_11) June 21, 2016
Understandably, he has been praised by every manager he has played with, along with Edin Dzeko, Carlos Tevez, Vincent Kompany and Alex Garcia. Not to forget pundits and opposition managers likes of Gary Neville, Jurgen Klopp, Sam Allardyce, Jamie Redknapp, Niall Quinn, etc., all publicly.
"David Silva sees everything"
— Yahoo Sport UK (@YahooSportUK) January 5, 2017
Phil Neville: "For me David Silva is the best player in the Premier League. He never seems to have a bad game." pic.twitter.com/SovfaenDzJ
— City Watch (@City_Watch) March 5, 2017
Dzeko on David Silva: "They don’t call him the Little Magician for nothing. he could take any ball you gave him, control it, and pass it on"
— MCFC Info (@MCFClnfo) January 9, 2017
????? Pep Guardiola: "David Silva es uno de los mejores jugadores que he entrenado en mi vida. Soy muy afortunado de tenerle en mi equipo".
— bet365_es (@bet365_es) March 11, 2017
On the contrary, it’s Merlin himself who avoids the limelight. He comes, plays his part quite wonderfully, and goes back. He has no ego, something which most footballers in this generation possess. He never felt the need to ‘show’ the world that he is a footballer living a fancy lifestyle with all the money he earns. How many girls has he dated? How often does he party? Does he party at all? Who does he hang out with? Who does he detest? Even the media have failed to unravel these mysteries, which other footballers voluntarily contribute to the public. He isn’t the sexiest of footballers, and won’t be making his way onto the cover page of Vogue, and he will be thankful for that, as he silently lives his life with utmost swagger and satisfaction, I presume.
Why does David silva still have the haircut of a 10 year old boy that goes to a private school ?
— Lewis (@LewisMcIntyre_4) September 17, 2014
Despite all the off-field flaws, is pretty expressive on the pitch though, not in terms of showboating, but while celebrating. The diminutive midfielder is usually the first one to hug his teammates and congratulate them on a goal, and one doesn’t miss the happy jump-and-hug when the tall ones like Dzeko or Toure scored. He accompanies his celebrations with a bright smile, and on scoring a goal himself, kisses his wrist, dedicated to his cousin Cynthia who passed away due to cancer at a young age. So, it’s not like he is an introvert. He has mastered the act of keeping his life private, only sharing what is important and dedicating himself to football. There isn’t any inspirational rags-to-riches story here. He was a kid when he wanted to play football, and didn’t stop doing what he loved.
Awww David silva is so cute always the first one to run and hug whoever scores the goal
— Lucy (@lucygoldstone) April 2, 2016
Another attribute which sets him apart is the willingness to fight for the team, and always being there for the team. He won’t be the catalyst to that fight which happens when players lose their poise, and he won’t be getting you a red card anytime soon because of sheer self-control. This self-control is an act of serving your team for the good. His inspirational story comes here. The lightweight Spaniard had injured his ankle on 12 separate occasions since his Valencia days, and doctors feared he may have to stop playing, or at least drop down levels before he turns 30. The situation had become bad in the second half of last season when his injury to the ankle was supposed to keep him out for months. But City’s poor form and injury problems stirred Silva, who took it upon himself to help Pellegrini’s fortunes. He took painkiller injections on a regular basis so that he could play. He wasn’t able to make much of an impact in the beginning, with many suggesting the player rest in order to prevent himself from damaging himself permanently. But he continued playing and gave his all for the team, and his form improved towards the end. Working hard in pre-season, he has become more flexible and closer to the Silva we saw a few seasons ago. 31 now, he still continues to thrive for the sky blues and the national side, and impressing us all.
Manuel Pellegrini on David Silva "He needs to manage his ankle. It's difficult for him to play two games in a row" pic.twitter.com/X4IaJl4kct
— Blue Tuesday (@BBCBlueTuesday) April 15, 2016
If David Silva is not fit then DO NOT PLAY HIM..why have him half ass a match then later hear he had a pain killing injection to play
— Keeménez (@Keemumer) March 20, 2016
David Silva has started pre-season one-week ahead of schedule to help erase recent ankle injury problems. Dedication!
— MCFC Info (@MCFClnfo) July 2, 2015
The point of this article wasn’t to just write praises about a player we like. David Silva became a social sensation, receiving several commercial offers and interviews since he scored his 30th goal for Spain. It’s like a new, young player suddenly emerging. The point is that the attention he is getting now, is something which he earned years ago. This article explored why he is a silent hero, and why him being silent about doesn’t mean that he isn’t a world-class player. One of the most intelligent players to play for City, it’s time we realise that he doesn’t need to be a Real Madrid or Barcelona player to have praises heaped on him. Yes, he may not be a flashy Cristiano Ronaldo with wonderful undercuts and toned thighs, but he deserves a certain amount of appreciative publicity so that people understand the true essence of being a footballer, that is being true to the sport and giving your all towards it.
See David Silva play in real https://t.co/xQL0ZLRA7A
— Loïc (@Viruspyko) March 19, 2017
— Richard Jolly (@RichJolly) December 19, 2014
David Silva is so good he can play for Man City and watch Barcelona at the same time pic.twitter.com/0AiCg4sdKN
— SPORTbible (@TSBible) March 10, 2017
The football world is certainly lucky to have David Silva, and here’s to hoping he still has the steam to last for the next 5 years or more.