The brilliant Palmeiras and Brazil forward tells the Guardian about the phone call from Pep Guardiola that persuaded him to assemble 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 rulers in January, has the potential to become one of the best forwards in “the worlds” but what does him stand out even more is his are looking forward to too help out defensively.

It is not a character he shares with too many sends but then they are not able to get a rollocking from their mother if they do not help out at the back. Gabriel Jesus does. Yes, its true-life that my mother has a go at me when I dont track back, he pronounces in his first interview with non-Brazilian media since signing for City. We are very, very close and she demands a lot from me, which is great. She only praises me if I have done something is worth kudo. I am really happy to have a mum like that, who really attentions. She always tells me the truth and her sincerity helps me a lot.

Mrs Vera Lcia is a constant and hugely positive presence in Gabriel Jesuss life and that is no bombshell considering his upbringing. The actors father died when Gabriel Jesus was young and his mother promoted him and his three brethren on her own. She was a cleaner back then and there was not a lot of money around. A football actor grows up faster than other people, he alleges. I grew up very soon because of the difficulties and responsibilities that I have always had.

Gabriel Jesus is a really mature 19 -year-old. We assemble 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 course of its interrogation. He starts by apologising for running late. I had to do the ice shower, he explains.

It has been a stormy 18 months for “the mens” from Jardim Peri, a humble community on the outskirts of So Paulo( it is a comunidade , a kind of favela , merely a little bit more peaceful ). In March 2015 he made his debut for Palmeiras after scoring 37 points in 22 tournaments in the Paulista Under-1 7 challenger and at the end of the season he was identified the best beginner of the Brasileiro .

And that was just the beginning. This summer he won Olympic gold with Braziland then built his debut for the elderly crew, tallying two purposes in a 3-0 away acquire against Ecuador. And he is still a girl. The former Brazil and Real Madrid striker Ronaldo, for one, is a love: When I look Gabriel I think about my own past. He has a superb wander ahead, Ronaldo told TV Globo recently.

It is not that long ago Gabriel Jesus was playing for the amateur crew Pequeninos do Meio Ambiente on the slopes of the military prison camp Romo Gomes. He moved on to Anhanguera but, unlike numerous colossal knacks these days, he did not assemble a top side Palmeiras until the age of 15 so his job was very much influenced by street football.

Gabriel Jesus: sciences, ploys and goals.

His childhood neighbourhood is always on his head and on his surface. On his forearm there is a tattoo showing a son 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 sidekick Neymar has.

I have always enjoyed working on and thats why I try to give my best good tactically as well as move forward. From an early age, in my vrzea periods[ 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 enroll the lurch knowing what I have to do to help the team.

He no longer lives in Jardim Peri but goes back to visit sidekicks. When doing so in December he was stopped by the police while driving his expensive car. A dark-skinned son cannot drive a neat gondola in the locality where he grew up without being stopped by the police. Everyone knows how hard it is to be black in our communities, he wrote on Instagram.

He remain in Jardim Peri until last year. He could have left for So Paulo as early as 2010 but the sorority did not offer him adaptation, means that he would have had to travel for four hours to get to and from qualify, 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 only, he articulates. Since I was six years old Ive only really thought about football. I used to watch it on Tv, performance video games and so on. I merely adore football. Some parties joke that I am too into it but football only summarize up my life.

His discipline is remarkable for such a young age, and this is probably one of the matters that has impressed Pep Guardiola, the manager who was hopeless to create him to City. Gabriel Jesus was a red-hot prospect even before the Olympics and City were able to beat off competition from Barcelona, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain partly because of a phone call from their new manager.

It was a involved decision, but in the end my desire to learn won, Gabriel Jesus says. The proximity of Guardiola as a director at City and the fact that it is a great club were very important factors in my final decision. Guardiolas phone call was a huge part of me deciding to go there. It saw me realise that Id love to work with him. I dont know him personally yet but he already drew me feel very safe about his activity there.

Gabriel Jesus, celebrating here after scoring for Palmeiras against Figueirense in June, be available to prevail the Brazilian entitlement before to access to Manchester. Photograph: Brazil Photo Press/ CON/ LatinContent/ Getty Images

Where will he play though? City are not exactly lacking in criticizing knack with Sergio Agero, Raheem Sterling, David Silva, Nolito, Kelechi Iheanacho, Kevin De Bruyne, Leroy San and Jess Navas able to occupy the forward places. For Palmeiras Gabriel Jesus played wide on the left before Cuca, the manager, moved him into the centre with good results: 11 aims in 18 tournament games.

I envisage I will fight for a neighbourhood as a winger in the team, he supposes. I actually favor playing as a left-winger rather than a striker, but I merely want to be very clear that Im willing to play in either point. I am often prepared to give up a position high on the tar and help out defensively because some good differentiate and attacking can cause a goal for my team in the end. Id like to think that Im a versatile player.

Only two years ago, during the course of its World cup finals, Gabriel Jesus was covering the sidewalk of his street in dark-green and yellowed as a love. Today he is one of the reference points in attack for society and country. Palmeiras are challenging for the name, they beat Corinthians 2-0 at the weekend to remain top, and Gabriel Jesus urgently wants to leave for Manchester City having won the conference. At Verdo he is an undisputed idol Glory, glory, alleluia, is Gabriel Jesus is the carol that all love sing( even if it irks his mother, who is a very religious person ).

But even if he lends the Brazilian deed to his Olympic medal, he will not get too carried away. I try to manage my the advances in a down-to-earth fad, he reads. Some players win a trophy and think that they are on top of “the worlds”. I dont let it go to my heading. People idolise me for prevailing the Olympics but I obstruct adding: It is just a medal.

Arguably the biggest challenge lies ahead forcing his behavior into Citys starting XI. All this change does not scare me at all, he replies. My life has always been full of challenges. Patently this is a bigger one, but best available combats are given to the best fighters. I will listen to the managers opinion and his advice in order to enhance and adapt as fast as I maybe can.


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