Too Soon To Write Him Off – Why Bernardo Silva Can Make An Impact At Manchester City Despite Slow Start
Bernardo Silva rose to great heights after some scintillating performances for his former club AS Monaco in Champions League encounters last season. Monaco were comprised of a young and energetic team – of which Silva was a key part – and everybody sat up and took notice of their decimating displays. The French club eventually had to bow out of the elite European competition but they pulled off a miraculous Ligue 1 title win, which thrust the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Thomas Lemar, Benjamin Mendy and Bernardo Silva to international attention.
Pep Guardiola identified the importance of having such young players at his club and immediately completed the signing of Bernardo Silva and Benjamin Mendy. While Mendy is out due to an injury, Silva, who was signed by Man City for £43m, has found it increasingly difficult to make a name for himself amidst City’s many celebrated attackers. For a 23-year-old youngster to make a name for himself in a foreign league with such talented teammates competing with him, it does seem like an uphill task.
One might argue that there was no need for Guardiola to purchase him in the first place but he could be looked at as an investment for the future. To be honest, his sporadic performances this season have been anything but encouraging. He seems to lack finesse but that is a problem that can be addressed only by allowing him to play more. It does seem like a vicious cycle but considering the kind of pure talent he displayed at Monaco, there is a reason to believe that he will gradually establish himself at City.
With reports suggesting Sergio Aguero could leave either in January or next summer, Guardiola will have a void to fill up front. Interestingly, Silva’s style is quite similar to David Silva’s. Both of them are extremely creative and use their pace and trickery to bludgeon past opponents.
It is noteworthy that even the senior player took time to slot in at the club but now the Etihad faithful cannot imagine a Man City team without him. Hence, it can be deduced that the younger Silva needs time to adjust as well. However, the amount of expectations resting on his shoulders is likely to amp up the pressure.
It must be understood that he has a long way to go and patience can prove to be virtuous in such situations. Making a slow start has worked out in favour of other City attackers. The likes of Raheem Sterling and Leroy Sane also took quite some time to settle in and presumably, that is what Guardiola is doing with Silva as well. He has a knack for bringing out the best from youngsters – look at what he did with Sterling – and there is no reason why he cannot do the same for Bernardo Silva when the time is right.