Barrett believes that the Spaniard's wizardry on the ball is both inspiring and frightening - and could make all the difference in City's push for a first league title since 1968.
He told the Manchester Evening News: "I've never seen a player like Silva in the Premier League. I worried about him when he first arrived, because he is so slight. But he's just too clever for opposing defenders.
"As a defender, you would try to get tight to deny him space. But he can create space in such tight areas. One moment you think you've got him, the next he's gone.
"He does make a difference. I know City have won without him, but I think they need him to be available more often than not this season."