Pellegrini expects Silva return


Manchester City attacker David Silva is set for a timely comeback for his side as they approach crunch fixtures against Stoke City in the Premier League before welcoming Real Madrid for the first leg of their Champions League semi-final.

Manager Manuel Pellegrini said Silva had come on well in training and should be involved against Stoke, adding that he hoped the Spaniard's injury problems were behind him.

Silva has missed the last three Premier League games with an ankle problem that has bugged him for the majority of the season, though Pellegrini said there was no ligament or muscle damage.

"It was not a problem of ligament or muscle, it was a hard kick that he could never recover 100 per cent from," he said

"I hope, with the last treatment, that he is 100 per cent fit now and he won't have any more problems in the future.

"He has improved a lot this week so he is very confident he can play tomorrow. We will see how many minutes he will play and then we will assess him after that, but the way he is feeling at the moment I don't think he will have any problems."

Pellegrini said he has rated Silva highly for a long time, and even considered signing him during his stint as Real Madrid coach in 2009-10.

"I was interested. He's a very good player and I think every manager wants to have David Silva in his squad," he said.

"But it was too many years ago to remember why a deal did not happen."