On occasions it is possible to fall out of love with football. Just for a few minutes at least. Do not worry, it happens to the best of us. It might follow a particularly insipid performance from your team or stem from a lurid tabloid headline detailing an odious piece of off-field behaviour from one of the “pampered millionaires” whose wages we pay.
Thank heavens then for David Silva; a player so sensationally skilful and effortlessly graceful that he is able to restore faith in the beautiful game with the merest flick of his left foot.
The man from Gran Canaria is a beacon of vision and timing, seeing passes which seemed impossible or at the very least improbable to execute; his assist for James Milner in the 2-0 win over Everton is likely to be the best we will see all season.
But he also possesses the ability and indeed the desire to get on the score-sheet himself. For City he has netted twice in seven league matches this campaign while his midweek brace for Spain against Scotland showed Silva at his ruthless best.
On the back of all this, he is priced at a tempting 5/1 to open the scoring against Villa, while the 13/10 offered for him to score at any time is worth some serious investment.
Having extolled the virtues of Silva then it would be wise to remember that there will be 19 other outfield players on the field at the Etihad, and some of them are also well worth considering in the goal scorers market.
Villa’s Gabriel Agbonlahor has scored four times already this season, one more league goal than he managed in the whole of the last campaign.
At his blistering, bustling best he is capable of troubling any defence in Europe and the 9/1 offered for him to open the scoring looks generous.
Also worth considering is City’s Sergio Aguero who, after a stunning start to life in England, is going through something of a goal drought. Well OK not quite, but he has not scored for nearly a month, so he is certainly due a goal and the 4/5 offered for him to do end his dry spell at any time against Villa is worth a look.
Finally, if you are looking for a long shot, try Villa defender Richard Dunne. The big man scored for the Republic of Ireland in midweek and although he has not scored in the Premier League for over a year, he did net against his former team when the two sides met back in 2009. He is available at 28/1 to open the scoring on Saturday.
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