Manchester City’s 3-1 knockout defeat to Lyon in the Champions League on Saturday night was club legend David Silva’s final game for the club.
After signing from Valencia back in June 2010, Silva went on to become arguably City’s greatest ever player as the Spaniard amassed 436 appearances, 76 goals, 138 assists, five League Cups, four Premier Leagues, two FA Cup’s and two Community Shield’s.
It is incredibly rare in today’s modern game that you find a player so consistent and so successful for such a long period of time at one club.
David Silva on Sergio Agüero:
"I am only there to help him and create the chances; I am happy because I think I helped him. I gave him lots of assists – he makes it very easy because he knows how to find the spaces and he's clinical."
— Man City Report (@cityreport_) August 17, 2020
Since his debut in the Premier League in August 2010, Silva heads the charts with 92 assists and 790 chances created, which is more than any other player in the league since.
It was announced on Monday that the midfielder’s loyalty and brilliance will be honoured with a statue of him outside the Etihad Stadium, set to be unveiled in 2021 alongside a statue for former captain Vincent Kompany.
Silva will also be commemorated by the naming of a training pitch and mosaic in his honour at City’s training ground.
He's always suited blue 💙
The shirts @21LVA made history in 👕
— Manchester City (@ManCity) August 17, 2020
The two-time European Championship and 2010 World Cup winner is valued by some as one of the greatest midfielders in Premier League history, due to his unrivalled precise passing and ability to find space in a tight area.
He holds the record for most European appearances for City, having played 70 Champions League matches over the past decade.
Martouf Speaks: “United fan here and Silva has been a bane of our lives since he joined. Without Silva it’s hard to see City winning as many league titles as they have. He was inspirational in the year they beat us on goal difference.”
Logic Never Wins: “Vinnie, Yaya, Silva and Aguero should have a joint statue outside the Etihad the same way United have done outside Old Trafford. The clubs greatest captain, the clubs greatest player in Yaya, the clubs best-ever player in Silva, with the clubs greatest goalscorer.”
In house praise:
City manager Pep Guardiola said: “In the small spaces, he is maybe the best I have ever seen. He came back from lockdown in incredible rhythm. If he decided to, he could play anywhere. There’s no doubt about that.
“The level he is at is the best of this season. He is playing really, really good. The fans are not here but he is going to come back to bid them farewell.”
City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak added: “David is a transformational player, a quiet leader who has inspired everyone around him.
“His statue will act as a lasting reminder of the wonderful moments that he gave us, not only as an incredible footballer, but as an inspiring ambassador who represented this football club with great dignity at all times.”
I’m gonna miss this team 💙 pic.twitter.com/yPVpHS2Viv
— David Silva (@21LVA) July 8, 2020
✅ DONE DEAL: David Silva has signed for Real Sociedad! 🇪🇸 pic.twitter.com/dHZX3QEeUR
— Goal (@goal) August 17, 2020
It was announced on Monday that Real Sociedad have acquired the Spanish midfielder on a two-year contract, where he will continue wearing the number 21 shirt.
The move is no surprise as Silva has recently been completing his coaching badges with Sociedad manager Imanol Alguacil.
The Spanish side finished sixth last season, thus qualifying for the Europa League and you can’t help feeling the more technical but slower style of football will allow the 34-year-old to thrive.