David Silva says his abiding memory of Manchester City will be the love he received from the club’s fans.
The 34-year-old playmaker is leaving Manchester at the end of the season, a decade after joining from Valencia. After 433 games, 77 goals, four league titles and countless individual highlights, Silva's exit is sure to be an emotional one.
Reflecting on his time at the club to DAZN Spain, Silva said: "For me, it has been perfect. When I arrived, I didn't think I would be here for so long. Besides football, trophies, everything, I will remember the love of the people, which is the most important thing."
Silva’s exit will mark the impending end of a historic era at the Etihad Stadium. He and Sergio Aguero are the sole survivors from the squad which won the 2011-12 Premier League title – their first title of the modern era.
Silva was signed to help deliver that sort of success, but he seems overwhelmed with how much has been achieved in his time in England.
"[Signing for City] was one of the best decisions of my career because I have really enjoyed it. Both myself and my family have enjoyed it a lot,” he said.
“In the end, in a country that is not yours, for them to treat you the way they have, it is difficult to get that and I've been lucky enough to do it.
“I have tried to do my best. I have good statistics, but there is also the spirit you have had in the team. Thank God we have had good spirit because if not, I would not have been here for 10 years.
“When it is such an ambitious project, if you do not play well, they will bring in new people and you will be out.
“Being here for 10 years is not easy. It makes me proud. Being in another country, and in a competitive league, to be the player who has played the most games here makes me proud."
Bar an unexpected change of heart, Silva's final Premier League appearance will come at home to Norwich on Sunday. City will return to the Etihad two weeks later, for the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie with Real Madrid.