City failed to reach the knock-out stages of the Champions League in the two previous seasons, when they couldn't cope with "group-of-death" situations.
City go into Tuesday's return fixture against CSKA Moscow at the Etihad Stadium, with Silva saying: "We are definitely in the driving seat to qualify now, having won our last match in Moscow.
"It was three very important points and a real step towards qualification.
"And that has been the objective, because in the last two seasons - although we've had difficult groups - we've not managed to get beyond that stage.
"So that's what we NEED to do this season.
"From a personal point of view, the trophy I've not yet won is the Champions League.
"Hopefully, I'll get a chance to win that one before I retire - that would be great."
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