Bernardo Silva relishing Man City's festive fixture pile-up

Pep Guardiola’s side are amid a run of 13 games in six weeks, but their Portuguese playmaker welcomes England’s traditional busy Christmas period

Bernardo Silva is enjoying the fast and furious nature of Manchester City’s festive schedule as Pep Guardiola’s side head into the busiest period of their season.

The defending Premier League champions are amid a sequence of 13 matches in just six weeks across all competitions, a run that includes crunch league clashes with Chelsea and Liverpool as well as a Carabao Cup quarter-final at Leicester City.

English football’s traditionally hectic festive fixture list has often been a bone of contention among managers, but Silva – who joined City from Monaco in 2017 – is relishing the busy calendar.

“It’s a little bit different because both countries where I played before, Portugal and France, we had a Christmas break,” he told reporters.

“Here you don’t stop so it’s a little bit complicated. But it’s good to play every three days.

“We complain a little bit but it’s good because we love this game and we love to play. And it’s a tradition in England so we have to respect it.”

Guardiola fielded a much-changed XI at Watford on Tuesday, and Silva believes City’s battling 2-1 win underlines the strength in depth among the playing personnel.

“It says the squad is very strong and that’s very important for us especially in December and January which are very tough months with a lot of fixtures and a lot of difficult games,” he said.

“So it’s good to change players and not see the difference and to still get important wins like [against Watford]. We’re very happy with the squad we have.”

City ran away with the title last year, amassing 100 points among a host of other records, but despite dropping just four points from 15 matches in 2018-19, the leaders are just two clear of Liverpool, the other unbeaten side in the division.

“It will be a very tough year, we knew that,” Silva added. “All our rivals are doing better this season than last season. So we have to focus on ourselves and then we’ll see how our opponents do.

“Last season we had two more points — this season we already conceded two draws and last season we only had one at this point of the season. I don’t know if we’re doing better but I think we’re doing well.

“We just want to keep doing the same thing: forget about last season, know what we did last season was amazing breaking all the records. But this is another season and we have to try to win the Premier League again, against different opponents, stronger opponents in my opinion and it will be a tough season for us.”

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