Manchester: Manchester City assistant manager David Platt believes David Silva is finally reaping the rewards for his performances after the Spaniard's double inspired a 2-0 win over Fulham.
Silva, who had only scored once in the league this season prior to Saturday's victory at Eastlands, was in clinical form against Martin Jol's side and the midfielder came within inches of claiming a hat-trick when a shot narrowly missed the target just moments after his second goal.
Despite his lofty reputation earned over the last two seasons in the Premier League, Silva has not found the net with great regularity and still only has 13 career Premier League goals to his name.
Platt, however, insisted that a lack of goals from Silva has never been a concern to the City coaching staff.
"With his performances over the past few months, perhaps all season, he deserves to have had a few more goals under his belt," Platt said.
"But we know how important he is, whether he is scoring goals or not scoring goals. I think it would be harsh to say goals have been lacking.
"He's in the team for all sorts of reasons, not just his goalscoring ability. His performances of late have been deserving of more goals and I'm pleased for him that he's got two. He should have had a hat-trick."
The victory cut Manchester United's lead at the top of the Premier League to four points, for 24 hours at least, with the league leaders scheduled to be in action at Tottenham on Sunday.
Platt, however, conceded that all his side can do, as they attempt to reduce the deficit, is concentrate on their own form.
"That's all we can do," said Platt. "We've got 15 games left, they've got 16. Both teams will drop points between now and the end of the season.
"We need to make sure we keep getting victories and, if United slip up, we're ready to take advantage of that.
"We can't do anything about Manchester United, our focus and concentration is on winning as many games as we can and keep getting the points."
The victory also presented Sergio Aguero with the chance to make a comeback from his recent hamstring injury, the Argentinian enjoying a nine-minute outing which showed he has made a full recovery.
"It's only two weeks since he did the injury," said Platt. "He's trained with us all week and stepped things up so it wasn't a case of throwing him in when we shouldn't have done.
"For him to go on there and get 10 minutes under his belt, with another week's training to come, is pleasing because two weeks is a short time."
Jol agreed that Silva was the best player on display during the encounter, even going so far as to describe him as the "best player in the Premier League".
But Jol has concerns closer to home with a run of two wins from 15 games leaving Fulham hovering just above the relegation zone.
"There are eight or nine of us down there in a relegation battle," said Jol. "We need four or five wins."
Jol also moved to dismiss rumours that veteran full-back John Arne Riise had refused to travel with the team to sit on the bench after losing his place in the starting line-up to Kieran Richardson.
"He's a fantastic boy, he will never come up with that sort of thing," said Jol. "John Arne Riise stayed at the team hotel to do an extra session because I promised him if he's not starting, he could stay there.
"Richardson has probably been our best player the last couple of matches.
"That was the thing, after the Liverpool game I wasn't happy. I tried to do something to freshen things up or to challenge John to play better."