The brilliant Palmeiras and Brazil forwards tells the Guardian about the phone call from Pep Guardiola that convinced him to join Manchester City and that his mum is never pleased with him unless he helps out defensively too
No one wants to be told off by their mother and Gabriel Jesus is no different. The Brazilian wonderkid, who signed for Manchester City in the summer for 27 m and will join the Premier League managers in January, has the potential to become one of the best forwards in “the worlds” but what realizes him stand out even more is his desire to likewise help out defensively.
It is not a mannerism he shares with too many forwards but then they are not able to get a rollocking from their father if they do not is to assist at the back. Gabriel Jesus does. Yes, its true-life that my mother has a go at me when I dont track back, he suggests in his first interview with non-Brazilian media since signing for City. We are very, very close and she asks a lot from me, which is great. She only praises me if I have done something worthy of adoration. I am really happy to have a mum like that, who really attentions. She ever tells me the truth and her seriousnes helps me a lot.
Mrs Vera Lcia is a constant and enormously positive existence in Gabriel Jesuss life and that is no astonish considering his upbringing. The players papa died when Gabriel Jesus was young and his mother invoked him and his three brethren on her own. She was a cleaner back then and there was not a lot of fund around. A football musician grows up faster than other people, he suggests. I grew up very quickly because of the difficulties and responsibilities that I have always had.
Gabriel Jesus is a really mature 19 -year-old. We fulfill at Academia de futebol, Palmeirass training centre and he is respectful and humble. He does not wear sunglasses or headphones and does not play with his mobile during the interview. He starts by apologising for being late. I had to do the sparkler tub, he explains.
It has been a tumultuous 18 months for the man from Jardim Peri, a humble vicinity on the outskirts of So Paulo( it is a comunidade , a kind of favela , simply a little bit more peaceful ). In March 2015 he made his debut for Palmeiras after scoring 37 objectives in 22 competitions in the Paulista Under-1 7 rival and at the end of the season he was referred the best beginner of the Brasileiro .
And that was just the beginning. This summertime he won Olympic gold with Braziland then formed his debut for the elderly unit, tallying two purposes in a 3-0 away win against Ecuador. And he is still a adolescent. The former Brazil and Real Madrid striker Ronaldo, for one, is a follower: When I watch Gabriel I think about my own past. He has a superb jaunt ahead, Ronaldo told TV Globo recently.
It is not that long ago Gabriel Jesus was playing for the amateur team Pequeninos do Meio Ambiente on the tars of the military prison camp Romo Gomes. He moved on to Anhanguera but, unlike numerous prodigious knacks these days, he did not assemble a top side Palmeiras until the age of 15 so his occupation was very much shaped by street football.
His childhood neighbourhood is always on his psyche and on his scalp. On his forearm there is a tattoo showing a boy with a ball in his hand looking at a favela in front of him, dreaming of a better future in football. The tattoo is almost identical to the one that his friend Neymar has.
I have always experienced working hard and thats why I try to give my best good tactically as well as move forward. From an early age, in my vrzea daylights[ a special type of Brazilian street football ], I tried to take in all the instructions of all the coach-and-fours I had. I am the same today. After all, it is very important to recruit the pitch knowing what I have to do to help the team.
He no longer was living in Jardim Peri but goes back to visit acquaintances. When doing so in December he was stopped by the police while driving his expensive vehicle. A dark-skinned boy cannot drive a neat car in the neighborhood where he grew up without being stopped by the police. Everyone knows how hard it is to be pitch-black in our communities, he wrote on Instagram.
He stayed in Jardim Peri until last year. He could have left for So Paulo as early as 2010 but the club did not furnish him adaptation, means that he would have had to travel for four hours to get to and from grooming, and that would have had a negative impact on his institution work.
Not that Gabriel Jesus paid too much attention to anything apart from football. My whole life has always been football and that exclusively, he responds. Since I was six years old Ive only really thought about football. I used to watch it on Tv, play video games and so on. I only desire football. Some beings joke that I am too into it but football exactly summarize up my life.
His discipline is remarkable for the purposes of the a young age, and this is probably one of the things that has impressed Pep Guardiola, the manager who was hopeless to produce him to City. Gabriel Jesus was a red-hot prospect even before the Olympics and City were able to beat off contender from Barcelona, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain partly because of a phone call from their brand-new manager.
It was a complicated decision, but in the end my desire to learn won, Gabriel Jesus says. The attendance of Guardiola as a director at City and the facts of the case that it is a great organization were very important factors in my final decision. Guardiolas phone call was a huge part of me deciding to go there. It stimulated me realise that Id love to work with him. I dont know him personally hitherto but he already induced me feel very safe about his assignment there.