Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

£43M Silva the Perfect Signing for Guardiola

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

£43M Silva the Perfect Signing for Guardiola

Article excerpt

BERNARDO Silva is the epitome of a Pep Guardiola player.

And City's £43m move for the Portuguese playmaker is further evidence their manager will not compromise - even after a trophyless first season at the Etihad.

Guardiola is determined to conquer English football the only way he knows how - and a diminutive, technically flawless midfielder fits into his masterplan perfectly.

With David Silva, Kevin de Bruyne and Ilkay Gundogan already at his disposal, the 22-year-old would not appear to be a priority signing.

But such is Guardiola's determination to construct City in his own image and replicate his success at Barcelona and Bayern Munich that Silva becomes the first signing in a summer of major overhaul.

Silva was outstanding in Monaco's French titlewinning team that also knocked City out of the Champions League in the round of 16.

The swashbuckling style of Leonardo Jardim's side brought Silva, Kylian Mbappe and more to the attention of the world at large.

It's notable that Silva's agent Jorge Mendes held informal talks with City after the first leg in February - Mbappe was also discussed.

Guardiola's obsession with quick-passing, possession football immediately drew him to Silva, a player he describes as 'intelligent and physically strong.' Crucially, he is a player who can meet Guardiola's exacting demands on the ball.

"The big qualities in the big, big clubs is when you are close to the box of the opponent, the players don't lose the ball," he said. …

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