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Silva lining for Manchester City as David returns to replace injured De Bruyne

Playmaker shines as Pep Guardiola’s side prove far too strong for Huddersfield.

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David Silva scored a stunning free-kick as Manchester City thrashed Huddersfield (Martin Rickett/PA)

David Silva scored a stunning free-kick as Manchester City thrashed Huddersfield (Martin Rickett/PA)

David Silva scored a stunning free-kick as Manchester City thrashed Huddersfield (Martin Rickett/PA)

David Silva made his timely return to the Manchester City starting line-up as he replaced the injured Kevin De Bruyne for the Premier League thrashing of Huddersfield.

The former Spain international marked his 250th league appearance for the champions with an influential display which offset the absence of his team-mate, including scoring a tremendous free-kick.

Here, Press Association Sport takes a closer look at Silva’s display in the 6-1 victory.

Reception

Silva walked out for the pre-match amble at the Etihad Stadium carrying his son Mateo. The playmaker missed a string of games over the Christmas period after Mateo arrived extremely premature and spent five months in a Spanish hospital. The Manchester City supporters heartily cheered when Silva’s name was announced before kick-off – and even more so when he was substituted just after the hour.

Teamwork

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Silva shone out as City showed their strength at home to Huddersfield (Martin Rickett/PA)

Silva shone out as City showed their strength at home to Huddersfield (Martin Rickett/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

Silva shone out as City showed their strength at home to Huddersfield (Martin Rickett/PA)

One of the best playmakers of recent times, Silva laid on three chances inside the opening moments of the contest. He wriggled through the Huddersfield defence to set up Sergio Aguero before twice creating opportunities for Gabriel Jesus. A constant thorn in the side of the Terriers, Silva continued to torment the visitors with his vision.

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Goal threat

Fired in a half-volley just after the half-hour mark but it was blocked. His 49th goal for City came in style as he curled a superb free-kick past Ben Hamer at the start of the second half. It was, in fact, Silva’s first Manchester City goal to come from a direct free-kick, a set-piece he probably would not have taken had De Bruyne been involved.

Overall

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Silva carried his son onto the pitch before putting on a masterclass (Martin Rickett/PA)

Silva carried his son onto the pitch before putting on a masterclass (Martin Rickett/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

Silva carried his son onto the pitch before putting on a masterclass (Martin Rickett/PA)

Silva may have only been on the pitch for 64 minutes before being replaced by Riyad Mahrez but he certainly showed he is ready to carry on where he left off last season. Plenty of the headlines will be saved for the performance of hat-trick hero Aguero but Silva’s display shows that, despite losing a player of the calibre of De Bruyne, City’s strength in depth is second to none. Retiring from international duty will only help Silva provide these sorts of performances on an ever-regular basis and he will be keen to keep himself on free-kicks, too.


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