Compassionate Pep welcomes Silva back into City squad for trip to Stoke

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Manchester City have won 81 points from their 30 Premier League games this season - three more than they earned in the entirety of 2016-17.

City will also be keen to bounce back from just a fourth defeat of the season in all competitions when they let slip an early lead to lose 2-1 to Basel tomorrow.

And Guardiola's side will be delighted to head for the sun immediately after the game and a chance to recharge their batteries following a night of old-school Stoke.

"There are always goals to pursue, statistics to overcome, and we will carry on and then work towards next season".

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has urged English players to go out of their comfort zones and play in foreign countries during their careers.

The Premier League match between Stoke and Manchester City will be broadcast on NBCSN.

The draw for the Champions League last eight takes place on Friday and Guardiola will watch it live, along with his first-team squad, at their warm weather training camp in Abu Dhabi, where City flew immediately following the Stoke win.

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For a Stoke side with just one victory in their previous 10 league games, it was the stuff of nightmares and, given the ease with which Guardiola's team was moving the ball around, it was hard to see a way back for Paul Lambert's men.

"Sometimes you have to hold your hands up - that's why they're going to win the league and are in the race to win the Champions League".

'When I play football I forget about everything else, it is good for me to play, ' Silva said.

City's development has happened at a much faster pace under Guardiola, who, after heavy investment in the transfer market, could secure a treble in his second season in charge.

Consider also Stoke's awful recent record against the big boys, and the fact that they've conceded an average of 4.5 goals per game in their last six such matches, then it's impossible not to suggest an away win, even at odds of [1.25].

Pep Guardiola lavished praise on the Spaniard, adding: 'Normally a player of this quality you think isn't a fighter. I want to be part of that history. When the weekend is over, they are like: "'The weekend is over, there are no more games.' But we have to play". It's good for me to play.

Manchester City's David Silva is still being allowed compassionate leave to spend time with his wife in Spain, where the couple's prematurely born son is still receiving medical attention.

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