David Silva is a “special” talent who can stay at Manchester City for as long as he wants, says Pep Guardiola.
The 31-year-old midfielder is into his eighth season at the Etihad Stadium, having signed from Valencia for £25 million in 2010.
City are already in talks regarding a possible extension to his contract, and Guardiola is hoping to see the World Cup winner stick around for many years to come.
He said of Silva and efforts to tie him down to fresh terms: “His reputation throughout the world - they know how good he is.
“His team-mates give him a lot of credit, the media and the fans.
“He’s a special player who I like a lot, a competitor, a fighter, a winner, he’s got the quality to keep the ball.
“We spoke about him many times, you have to be so happy because we have him.
“He loves to be here because he’s part of the history - Joe Hart, Vincent Kompany, Yaya Toure, Sergio Aguero. He’s one of the guys who have given this club the important step.
“I think we’d like him to stay until he decides.”
Silva is already tied to City until 2019, having committed to a five-year deal in 2014.
Work is being done to extend that agreement by a further 12 months, by which time the Spain international will be 34.
Age does not appear to be an issue for Silva, though, with his game about creativity and guile, rather than pace and power which can fade down the years.
He has been a regular again for City this season, helping Guardiola’s side to make an unbeaten start to the 2017-18 campaign across all competitions.