David Silva brings relentless Man metropolis to a halt in different second

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It would be tempting to think that Pep Guardiola was charitable to some of the Manchester City players chasing records on the final day of the season. Ederson, Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus and David Silva all had personal reasons for wanting to be on the pitch from the start against Norwich City, and all were.

The likelier reality is that including those five is part of a wider plan as the team prepare to take on Real Madrid in just under a fortnight’s time and any milestones that were able to be hit against the Canaries were a bonus.

About brings

David Silva brings relentless Man City to a halt in special moment

About relentless
Relentless may refer to:

This is the Guardiola way. He could have handed out appearances to a number of academy players – several have been training with the senior squad in recent weeks – and could have played for all kinds of records, but does not believe in handouts. If the team hit 100 goals, and if each player managed to reach their own records, then great but they would do so while carrying out their duty for the greater good of the team.

Man City vs Norwich

One of the qualities the manager has zeroed in on since the Arsenal defeat has been commitment. As he has said countless times throughout his tenure at the Etihad, he can accept his team losing games but his players should not be beaten on effort and ‘walking’ in the first half of their FA Cup semi-final clearly set some alarm bells ringing.

David Silva brings relentless Man City to a halt in special moment

In the two games since, against two relegated teams, the lineups have been strong and so has the effort.

Sterling was that committed to breaking into the Norwich half from kick-off he almost forgot to kneel at the start of the game; De Bruyne didn’t put his hunt for assists above arcing the ball into the far corner wonderfully for the second goal; three substitutes were brought on at the half-time whistle.

All of which made it all the more special when all of City’s players, bench, and staff stood as one to applaud David Silva off the pitch in what was his final Premier League appearance after ten, special years at the club.

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It was a fitting tribute to the player’s ability to dictate the tempo of many a match that all stopped as one to give the individual his due, even if the absence of a crowd made it less fitting as a spectacle than it should have been.

The team continued their relentless march once he had left, smashing in another goal to add further gloss to the scoreline and prove their commitment to Guardiola ahead of Real Madrid.

However relentlessly the football club presses on, though, Silva will never be forgotten and the time taken out of the game to appreciate him recognised that.