Last season's Premier League winners have to defeat Real Madrid at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday night to avoid a second successive group stage exit.
But Silva, who has only played two European games this season due to injury, thinks City are gradually making progress having only made their Champions League debut in the last campaign.
The Spaniard said in The Sun: "Three years ago, we struggled to get into that competition. Now we are required to win it but we must have patience.
"We know that so far, we should have done better in Europe but we can only look forward."
Former Valencia playmaker Silva was reportedly a transfer target of Real in the summer but he opted to sign a new contract with City in September.
He said: "I am very happy in Manchester. I'm one of the leaders and part of a team.
"When I play here, I feel very important. Everything works well here and I am happy, so I renewed."