Damien Delaney on how David Silva caused 'pandemonium' in a Premier League match
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"Next thing, David Silva just stood in front of the bench - he took himself out of the game."
Damien Delaney and Cillian Sheridan were guests on House of Football this week, and the latter spoke about his experience of facing Manchester City in the Premier League.
Last weekend, Pep Guardiola's side clinched their third league title in a row and they are two games away from completing the Treble.
Ex-Crystal Palace defender Delaney played against Pep's team and spoke about the brilliance of the team, and, particularly, former City star David Silva.
Damien Delaney on David Silva.
The former Spain midfielder is one of Man City's greatest-ever players. Between 2010 and 2020, he played 436 games for the Manchester club, scoring 77 goals and making 93 assists.
Silva helped Man City win four Premier League titles, two FA Cups and five EFL Cups. He also raised the standard of midfield play in the Premier League.
Tried and tested tactics to stop talented players, such as man-marking them, no longer had a levelling effect, as Delaney's Palace team discovered.
In one match against the Eagles, Silva bamboozled his opponents, using their own tactics against them. Delaney's anecdote offers insight into why Guardiola's team have been so difficult to stop over the last seven years.
"I'll tell you a funny story. We played Man City away, and, Joel Ward, who is still playing for them (Palace), was designated to mark David Silva," Delaney said.
"Man-mark him because he was their best player. So we had, like, a basic shape like 4-4-1-1, and Wardy was our most athletic player.
"So, after about five minutes - I could see because it happened in front of me - David Silva was just looking at him that.
"Next thing, David Silva just stood in front of the bench - he took himself out of the game.
"I thought he was going over to have a chat and Wardy followed him anyway. Wardy stood with him."
“Next thing, David Silva just stood in front of the bench, and took himself out of the game!”
Damien Delaney on how David Silva caused havoc in a Premier League match 😂
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Silva deliberately withdrew from the match to create more space for his teammates.
According to Delaney, this caused 'pandemonium' for Palace, who had worked on the man-marking tactic ahead of the match.
"All of a sudden, now it's 10 v 10 (players) in a bigger space," the former Republic of Ireland defender said.
"Samir Nasri came into the pocket. Well, oh my God, pandemonium, abandon ship! The plan we were working on (was gone)."
"David Silva knew 10 v 10 in the bigger space, 'I've another guy who will come in here, no problem'. He stood there for about a minute and a half.
"You see Wardy looking at the gaffer going, 'What will I do?' And he went, 'Just hang on!' David Silva just stood there."
Delaney said that Man City's intelligent players, their willingness to work hard off the ball, and adapt to in-game situations has made them perennial champions.
You can watch the full show below.
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- Haggling to get into League of Ireland games, Liverpool’s decline and Bruno Fernandes moaning.
- Ireland’s glimmer of hope, selfies with Roy and the art of free-kicks.
- David Connolly recalls Roy Keane's blunder in first team talk as a manager.
- "In an ideal world, Man United would move David de Gea on this summer."
- Damien Delaney on Sam Allardyce's first team talk to the Crystal Palace players.
- Matt Holland’s classy response to Roy Keane’s infamous ‘God Save the Queen' remark.