El Centrocampista

A SILVA LINING? – Midfielder’s frustration could prove bad news for the Premier League


European under 19 champions. European under 21 champions. World cup winners.

It’s a honours list that many countries can only dream of but has led to many critics labelling manager Vincente del Bosque’s job as the ‘easiest in world football’.

On paper they are probably right, but although the vast amount of talent at the former Real Madrid coach’s disposal cannot be disputed, accommodating all those world class players is a challenge in itself.

Perhaps then del Bosque’s main challenge is not on the ‘football front’ itself, but behind the scenes with his man management skills more in need than his tactical knowledge.

Players who would ordinarily walk into any side – find themselves in the unusual situation of being frustrated on the sidelines.

Although the discontent within those players must surely exist, perhaps the most telling reason as to Spain’s success in recent years is that it very rarely gets aired to the press.

Despite sublime club form, Silva has been left frustrated by Spain.

It’s a rare occurrence when  you get a player speaking out against del Bosque or indeed the Spanish Football Federation itself.

Untill now that is.

Rather surprisingly it has come from a player who is introvert by nature and far from flinging himself in front of every camera going, is also known to be quite media reclusive.

David Silva has taken the Premier League by storm since arriving from Valencia just over a year ago and despite the high-profile arrivals of Sergio Aguero and Samir Nasri this summer, he is is arguably the first name on Roberto Mancini’s team sheet.

The diminutive schemer has been lauded almost unequivocably by the mainstream press and pundits alike and has become one of the most respected midfielders in the Premier League today.

It is in Spain however, that David Silva wants to receive the recognition that he, and Manchester City fans alike, feel he deserves.

Very much abit part player since breaking into the squad, it is clear that Silva is growing increasingly frustrated at being overlooked for a starting berth.

He was an unused substitute in Spain’s 6-0 win over Lietchenstein last time out.

“I don’t think that your performances at club level have any effect on whether you play for the national side. I have played at a very high level for my club for a long time, but it’s not been enough to earn a starting berth,” Silva was quoted as saying by Marca.

“I feel lucky to be part of this great squad, but I also get the feeling that the coach doesn’t really need me.

“When we lost against Switzerland at the World Cup, I was the only one who felt the consequences and that’s not been the only time that I was the victim.”

“Whether my situation would have been different if I played for Barcelona or Real Madrid? To be honest, I sometimes get the feeling that I would be treated differently if I had joined one of those two teams.”

It is that last allegation that is perhaps the most concerning and with nine out the last starting eleven coming from the two dominant forces in Spain it is clear the claim holds some substance.

While it would be foolish to suggest that there is some sort of conspiracy favouring the two, it would be ever so easy just to rely on the pair to constantly source the national team with their players.

The main worry for David Silva which should also be a worry for the Premier League as a whole is that Silva is currently performing at his peak.

If he can’t get into the national team now, he may feel a return to La Liga is the only option available to him.

This would be a massive loss for English football and could set a precedent – if Spanish players feel that a move to England will decrease their chances of playing for the national team then they make think twice about moving over to the Premier League.

Obviously that fact that Spain also posses a midfield bursting at the seams with world-class talent does not help but it  would certainly be interesting to see how many time del Bosque has visited Manchester over the past year…

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