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Silva rejected Barca and Real

David Silva has confirmed he rejected the opportunity to join both Barcelona and Real Madrid before he signed for Manchester City.

• No 'crazy' Carlos Tevez fee

Silva, 25, has been in sensational form of late and has played a key role in City's march to the top of the Premier League, but admitted it could have been a very different personal story had he opted to sign for one of La Liga's big two.

"Madrid and Barcelona are great teams, but I'm happy here and I would like to stay here for many years," he told Cadena SER.

"My family are the same as me, we're happy. The people treat me really well and I'm very relaxed. I live in a very peaceful area, a small town. The important thing is the team. We are playing well and we are leaders.

"At the end of the season we will be in the fight and maybe we'll win the title. It's like any other club. They are putting together a great team and we hope to be one of the biggest sides in Europe. They [City] were the team who pushed hardest for me. I didn't have to think about it because they were the only team to push so hard to sign me and I'm happy."

Silva also conceded that he had been surprised with the speed of his adaptation to English football, while revealing the contrasting cultures of the respective leagues.

"I thought it was going to be harder but they have made it easy for me and I'm happy," he continued. "The atmosphere has surprised me, the competition and the relaxed atmosphere from day to day is fundamental. The public don't come in to the training sessions and at the games they are very respectful."

And despite Silva's overpowering influence in City's clinical 6-1 victory over Manchester United, he backed their goalkeeper David de Gea, formerly of Atletico Madrid, to be a success at Old Trafford.

"I am going to enjoy it a little but in the knowledge that we have a game on Wednesday," he said. "On the pitch it's each man for himself, but I wish [De Gea] all the best because he is a great goalkeeper and I am sure he will do really well [at United]."

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