Reports suggest the Blues are willing to spend up to £30million on the Spain international.
Valencia would find it difficult to snub such an approach, with their financial difficulties well documented.
They have already offloaded star striker David Villa to Barcelona, but further funds would be most welcome.
City are hoping to take advantage of the unfortunate situation at Mestalla, with money troubles not an issue at Eastlands.
They have identified a number of potential targets, and Silva features prominently on that list.
Initial contact with Valencia has now been made, putting the wheels in motion, but formal talks will not take place until later in the summer.
"The news is true," said Los Che president Manuel Llorente.
"City got in touch with us to ask for a meeting, but then they informed us that they could not come and that they intend to do so a little further down the line."