David Silva believes teenage talent Phil Foden has all the footballing credentials to emulate his fabled footsteps at Manchester City.
Silva recently announced that he will be leaving the Citizens at the end of 2019/20, bringing a close to a trophy-strewn decade at the Etihad.
Can Foden follow in Silva’s path? Five things to know…
- Silva recently confirmed that 2019/20 will be his last season as a Man City player.
- His 10-year stint yielded four Premier League titles, two FA Cups and four League Cups.
- Foden has often been earmarked as the perfect heir to Silva’s playmaker throne.
- Aptly dubbed the ‘Stockport Iniesta’, Foden has drawn widespread adulation for his technical style of play.
- Silva now believes the 19-year-old has what it takes to fill his boots.
As such, Pep Guardiola will have 12 months to source an adequate Silva successor, but the diminutive Spanish genius believes his replacement is already sitting right on the doorstep of the Catalan coach.
Speaking to the Mirror, he said: “I’m sure he’s going to be a fantastic player. He’s a very nice man and he will be a good replacement for me.
“Apart from his natural skills, he’s a very competitive person. He always wants to win and that makes a very good footballer.
“When you’re young, you always ask people with experience. I’ve given him lots of advice, like how to move on the pitch. He’s taken the information in and he’s getting better day by day.
“He reminds me of myself when I was young — especially how he is as a person. He’s very quiet but always there, competing. He hates losing.
“The best advice I can give him is always stay calm. Whatever happens in football, the highs and lows, always keep calm.”
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‘City’s future is in safe hands’
The stars that became synonymous with the early Sheikh Mansour era have now started to leave the North West and move on to pastures new; first Yaya Toure, now Vincent Kompany, and of course Silva next year.
The Spaniard was certainly quick to highlight that it will be difficult to replace the leadership qualities of Kompany – who recently took up a player-manager role at Anderlecht – but he believes the future is bright.
He added: “It’s going to be very difficult to replace a player like Vinnie, on the pitch and off it. He was an excellent warrior for City. But with the new generation we will find another one, another Vinnie.
“You always need experienced footballers around to help you. But City’s future is in safe hands with Bernardo, Raheem, Leroy and Phil there.”