In-form Bernardo could still leave Manchester City as Guardiola makes transfer admission

The Portugal international has enjoyed a positive start to the 2021-22 campaign, but questions continue to be asked of his future

Bernardo Silva has been a star turn for Manchester City at the start of the 2021-22 campaign and still has four years left to run on his contract, but Pep Guardiola admits the Portuguese midfielder could leave.

Questions were asked of the 27-year-old playmaker over the summer over where he fitted into Guardiola’s plans.

He has however started five of City’s six Premier League games so far, scoring the winner against Leicester and impressing in a deep-lying role in the 1-0 victory over fellow title hopefuls Chelsea.

What has been said?

Bernardo has earned favour while competing with Phil Foden and Riyad Mahrez for minutes, but Guardiola concedes he may make a push for the exits.

The City boss told reporters: “All I want is for Bernardo to be happy, here or anywhere. All I want is his happiness because he’s a guy that deserves the best.

“He’s so intuitive – it’s not his role as a holding midfielder but he knows exactly how to play it and how to anticipate what is going to happen, with the ball or without the ball.

“Against Norwich he played exceptional, against Arsenal he played exceptional, Southampton played at the level of the team – that was not good – but how well he played against Chelsea is no surprise. How many times have we seen it? He was an incredible signing for us because he’s an exceptional person.”

Bernardo Silva Man City 2021-22

Guardiola added: “I never forget the second Premier League we won, with 98 points, he was the best player in England. He was nominated [for an award] but he was the best.

“After that season, later he dropped a little bit, he was not in the position he prefers but now he’s back and hopefully he can help us.

“If, at the end, he wants to leave and decides [to go] the only thing I can say is that the guy or the club that gets Bernardo is going to take one of the best players in the world. Is he happier? You cannot play in this way if you are not happy, it’s impossible.”

Bernardo’s record at Man City

City lured Bernardo away from Monaco in the summer of 2017 and he has made 208 appearances, scoring 36 goals while helping them to 10 pieces of silverware. That trophy haul is made up of three Premier League titles, four League Cups, an FA Cup triumph and two Community Shield wins.

He has also graced a Champions League final and signed a six-year contract at Etihad Stadium in March 2019.

Further reading

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