David Silva’s return to form has undoubtedly been one of the highlights of Manchester City’s start to the season. Since his comeback from injury as a substitute against Bayern Munich at the beginning of October, Silva has been back to his very best, dictating the tempo of City’s play and creating chances for those around him.
According to a report from Sky Sports, Silva has spoken of his desire to win the Champions League—the major trophy he desperately craves but has so far eluded him.
"From a personal point of view, the trophy I've not yet won is the Champions League,” said Silva. "Hopefully, I'll get a chance to win that one before I retire - that would be great."
So can he do it with Manchester City?
City are way short of being able to compete for the Champions League trophy this season, but it’s clear they are a club determined to keep improving. After struggling last season to build on their Premier League title win in 2012, they spent over £90 million this summer to add depth and options to their side.
If that level investment continues, and City can buy the right players to shore up their somewhat porous defence, they could have a real chance of European success over the next few seasons. With players like Sergio Aguero, Vincent Kompany and Silva entering their prime, some sensible defensive acquisitions could move City up a notch and see them compete with the likes of Real Madrid, Barcelona and Bayern Munich.
Bayern showed in their 3-1 win at the Etihad last month that they are ahead of City right now in terms of technical ability and style of play, but that gap isn't unassailable, and it can be bridged over the coming seasons with the right management and transfer policy.
The attacking tactics being implemented by Manuel Pellegrini, which have seen City score 41 goals in all competitions already this season, is developing quite nicely, and, given time, he is capable of turning City into a side with enough quality going forward to compete with the best. Eradicating the silly defensive errors that have so far held City back this season is his next task.
Silva signed a new five-year contract last summer, meaning he has plenty of time to achieve his dream whilst at City, and he is certainly good enough to lead a side capable of winning the Champions League.
His performances against Everton, West Ham, CSKA, Chelsea and Norwich in recent weeks have been right back to his best, showcasing all his skill and ability that have made him such a well-liked player. There are very few players in the Premier League (or indeed Europe) who can control a game like Silva, and City need him to remain in form if they are to be successful this season and beyond.
If City can make the correct additions in the coming transfer windows, and Pellegrini can continue to imprint his philosophy on the squad, there's no reason why Silva cannot achieve his Champions League ambitions with his current club.
Rob Pollard is Bleacher Report's lead Manchester City correspondent and will be following the club from a Manchester base throughout the 2013-14 season. Follow him on Twitter here: @TypicalCity.