Watford midfielder Tom Cleverley says Marco Silva is “right up there” with managers he has played under like Sir Alex Ferguson, David Moyes and Roberto Martinez.
The Hornets appointed Silva, 40, as their new head coach in May, with the Portuguese replacing Walter Mazzarri in the hotseat at Vicarage Road.
Silva previously managed at Estoril, Sporting Lisbon and Olympiakos before taking over from Mike Phelan as Hull City boss in January.
He was unable to keep the Tigers in the Premier League, but noticeably improved the team’s style of play and did enough at the KC Stadium to impress a number of clubs.
And Cleverley, who played under Ferguson and Moyes at Manchester United and Martinez at Everton, says Silva has all the attributes of a “top manager”
“He’s right up there,” he told BBC’s Football Focus ahead of Watford’s Premier League game against Arsenal on Saturday, which is live on BT Sport 1 on the eir Sport pack [kick off 5.30pm].
“You get a feeling when you have a top manager, and he has the perfect balanace of being firm with all the players, but also approachable.
“Everything is clear. And if you are not clear, and you are not taking on board his philosophy, then I am sure you will soon know about it!
“He’s very good, and hopefully he stays here a long time.”
Watford sit eighth in the Premier League table, after just one defeat from their opening seven games, three places behind Arsenal, who are unbeaten in seven games in all competitions and haven’t conceded in the Premier League since their 4-0 defeat to Liverpool at the end of August.
Silva will make a late decision on the fitness of Peruvian winger Andre Carrillo ahead of Saturday’s game.
The Benfica winger, who is on a season-long loan at Watford, played for his county in their 1-1 World Cup qualifier against Colombia on Wednesday night.
Forward Isaac Success has been ruled out for up to eight weeks with a knee injury, while defender Younes Kaboul has a hamstring problem and fellow defender Sebastian Prodl has a thigh injury.
Premier League football returns this weekend after the international break and you can see Watford take on Arsenal at Vicarage Road on the eir Sport pack, live on BT Sport 1 on Saturday, 14 October [kick-off 5.30pm].