The brilliant Palmeiras and Brazil forwards tells the Guardian about the phone call from Pep Guardiola that persuaded him to join Manchester City and that his mum is never pleased with him unless he facilitates out defensively too
No one wants to be told off by their baby 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 presidents in January, given the opportunity to become one of best available forwards in the world but what moves him stand out even more is his desire to too help out defensively.
It is not a trait he shares with too many sends but then they may not get a rollocking from their father if they do not is to assist at the back. Gabriel Jesus does. Yes, its genuine that my mother has a go at me when I dont track back, he says 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 are worth adoration. I am really happy to have a mum like that, who really cautions. She ever tells me the truth and her candour helps me a lot.
Mrs Vera Lcia is a constant and hugely positive proximity in Gabriel Jesuss life and that is no surprise believing his upbringing. The musicians parent died when Gabriel Jesus was young and his mother created him and his three friends on her own. She was a cleaner back then and there was not a lot of fund around. A football actor grows up faster than other beings, he says. I grew up very quickly because of the difficulties and responsibilities that I have always had.
Gabriel Jesus is a very mature 19 -year-old. We encounter 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 interview. He starts by apologising for running late. I had to do the sparkler soak, he explains.
It has been a hectic 18 months for “the mens” from Jardim Peri, a humble locality 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 tallying 37 aims in 22 plays in the Paulista Under-1 7 contender and at the end of the season he was named best available newcomer 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 goals in a 3-0 away triumph against Ecuador. And he is still a girl. The former Brazil and Real Madrid striker Ronaldo, for one, is a devotee: When I see Gabriel I think about my own past. He has a fantastic travel ahead, Ronaldo told TV Globo recently.
It is not that long ago Gabriel Jesus was playing for the amateur squad Pequeninos do Meio Ambiente on the lurches of the military prison camp Romo Gomes. He moved on to Anhanguera but, unlike many prodigious flairs these days, he did not join a upper side Palmeiras until persons under the age of 15 so his busines was very much influenced by street football.
His childhood neighbourhood is always on his thought and on his skin. On his forearm there is a tattoo proving a boy with a ball in his hand looking at a favela in front of him, fantasy of a better future in football. The tattoo is almost identical to the one that his sidekick Neymar has.
I have always enjoyed working hard and thats why I try to give my best tactically as well as going 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 tutors I had. I am the same today. After all, it is very important to participate the tone knowing what I have to do to help the team.
He no longer lives in Jardim Peri but goes back to visit pals. When doing so in December he was stopped by the police while driving his expensive vehicle. A dark-skinned son cannot drive a nice gondola in the community where he grew up without being stopped by the police. Everyone knows how hard it is to be pitch-black in local 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 golf-club did not furnish him accommodation, meaning that he would have had to travel for four hours to get to and from discipline, and that would have had a negative impact on his school work.
Not that Gabriel Jesus paid too much attention to anything apart from football. My whole life has traditionally been football and that simply, he says. Since I was six years old Ive only really thought about football. I used to watch it on Tv, gambling video games and so on. I simply enjoy football. Some parties joke that I am too into it but football exactly sums up my life.
His discipline is remarkable for the purposes of the a young age, and “its probably” one of the things that has impressed Pep Guardiola, the manager who was hopeless to accompanied him to City. Gabriel Jesus was a 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 brand-new manager.
It was a complicated decision, but in the end my desire to learn won, Gabriel Jesus says. The spirit of Guardiola as a administrator at City and the fact that it is a great team were very important factors in my final judgment. Guardiolas phone call was a huge part of me deciding to go there. It built me realise that Id love to work with him. I dont know him personally yet but he already established me feel very safe about his campaign there.