Manchester United legend Sir Alex Ferguson has claimed that David Silva’s defensive flaws were the only reason why he didn’t sign him in his time at Old Trafford.
Silva went on to join neighbours Manchester City for £24million from Valencia in 2010, a fee that now looks a bargain price in today’s game and has been a key component of the City team. Speaking to SiriusXM in New York in an interview to promote his new book, Leading, Ferguson revealed: “We watched Silva a lot when he was at Valencia.”
“And the other player they had, the same type, years before it, played in that No.10 role.
“My problem with that was you have to be very, very good to play in that position, because there’s no defensive duties for them.
“So if you’re wanting to be be really successful, everyone has to do their turn, has to work, you know?
“So I had a difficulty with that. But, in the end, of course, there’s the greats.
“You could say Lionel Messi was a No.10type, Maradona, some fantastic players, and I don’t dispute that.
“But at United we always found it difficult. The kind of No.10 I used came from my experience as a footballer.”
“When I started to lose my pace a bit, up front, I started to drop in, into the hole, in a different way to the No10s you’re talking about.
“I realised then the defenders found it difficult to cope with it, so all my teams had one striker and one playing off. Not in the hole, but playing off the front.”
Silva is a World Cup and European Championship winner with Spain and has won two premier league titles with Manchester City.