Silva key to City dream
David Silva's comeback from injury helped inspire Manchester City's return to form last weekend, and his fitness is likely to prove crucial to their Champions League qualification prospects.
Silva, back from a fortnight out with a knee injury, was superb as City beat an inept Crystal Palace 5-0, for only their third win in nine Premier League matches.
That victory has left Pep Guardiola's side fourth going into Saturday's home match against Leicester City, with a three-point lead over fifth-placed Arsenal and only the top four at the end of the season qualifying for the Champions League.
Sergio Aguero is making progress in his recovery from a groin injury, although it may be too soon for him to make a comeback. In any case, City's front three of Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus and Leroy Sane were in fine form without him last Saturday, aided by the creativity of Silva and Kevin De Bruyne.
Seven points from their final three matches will guarantee City's place in next season's Champions League, a target they would be more than hopeful of achieving given that the Leicester game is followed by matches against West Bromwich Albion and Watford, both out of form.
Then again, reigning English champions Leicester were struggling when City visited the King Power Stadium in December, yet Jamie Vardy was still able to score a hattrick in a 4-2 home victory.