Bernardo Silva has named his pet French bulldog ‘John’ in honour of Manchester City teammate John Stones – it’s one of football’s strangest bromances.
Bernardo Silva and Stones have been friends one and off the pitch since the former arrived from Monaco in 2017.
The 27-year-old is often seen walking his dog around Manchester with girlfriend Ines and the pup’s name comes from Stones.
Silva told The Times ahead of Sunday’s Manchester derby: “We’ve had him for nine months now. I don’t have kids yet, so he’s like my little kid. He loves it here.”
Not a typical dog’s name, but John seems content enough with it.
Kyle Walker posted a picture of Silva and John together before a name had been confirmed, joking: “Only Bernardo Silva would call his dog John.”
Silva has been one of City’s top players this season as they attempt to defend their Premier League championship and win their first Champions League trophy.
However, things could have turned out quite differently. Late last season, manager Pep Guardiola acknowledged Silva’s desire to depart the Etihad.
Silva has claimed that the coronavirus outbreak made him uncomfortable in England because he was living alone.
It had an effect on his performance off the field, and he desired to be closer to his family.
He continued: “People suffered much more than us but for me it was tough because I was far away from my family. Before I used to go to Portugal for a couple of days and have dinner with my mum and dad. It was just dinner but you’re with your parents so it’s nice. To not be able to do that was difficult.
“It was not a nice moment to be honest. For a while I was alone in my flat. Later my girlfriend came. It was bad for everyone. I could see in my teammates’ faces that it was tough for them too.”
The Portugal international stressed he wasn’t unhappy with the club itself and reaffirmed his love for City.
“I had a talk with the club because I wasn’t happy with my life here, and I wanted to be closer to my family, but it [wanting to leave] had nothing to do with the club,” Silva said.
“I love Manchester City. I love my teammates, I love the fans, I love the club. Afterwards, nothing happened. I stayed, and I will always give my best for this club as long as I stay here.”
Silva has scored 10 times and registered three assists this campaign.
City are three points clear of Liverpool at the top of the Premier League, but victory over Manchester United will see them restore their six point advantage.