Bernardo Silva is sending an important warning to two Man City players – Isaac Johnson

Of course, this was already evident to Manchester City supporters but the Portugal playmaker seems to have raised his levels in recent matches, especially so in the derby win when he ran the match. The 29-year-old helped out defensively while also starting several attacking moves, joining in himself at times.

Bernardo has been at the club for six years now and, as is the case with nearly all of Guardiolas early signings, has grown to become one of the teams most reliable players. Barcelona took one of them last season after Ilkay Gundogan had lifted the Treble.

The Nou Camp was also calling for Bernardo, and not for the first time. The midfielder had spoken to the Spanish giants in the summer of 2022 before Guardiola convinced him to stay, with the same happening this year.

In fact in August he penned an extension which keeps him at the Etihad until 2026. Ever since, Silva has shown his super strength – versatility. Many named him as a candidate to fill into Kevin De Bruynes role amid the Belgians long-term injury.

Phil Foden was another, but it is Julian Alvarez who has thrived there, perhaps unexpectedly. That has not been without the help of Bernardo. He has played on the right and in the middle five times apiece this season, helping the attack in both roles.

More recently, he has been asked to be Rodris aide. In the last four Premier League games, he has played as a deeper-lying midfielder who is going box-to-box in his own way. He has excelled and is consequently making Mateo Kovacic and Matheus Nunes scramble for minutes.

It will come as a wake-up call for the summer signings. Kovacic has not been used the same since his erratic display against Arsenal, where he was fortunate not to get sent off. He has started just one league game since, albeit began both wins over Young Boys.

Meanwhile, Matheus Nunes has not quite managed to attain the levels he showed upon his arrival. The defeat to Wolves seemed to be a turning point with displays since then being less than productive, if not poor.

Hes played just 19 Premier League minutes since the defeat to Arsenal a month ago although may have offered a glimpse of revival with an assist against Young Boys on Tuesday.

But in contrast, Bernardo has missed just five league minutes since missing the loss to Wolves, scoring two and assisting another in his last two outings – both of which came as a central midfielder.

At the same time, he is sending a message and a warning to Nunes and Kovacic that their top level is needed at all times or they risk losing their spot to someone else. Nearly every position on the pitch is always up for grabs given the versatility the team offers.