Manchester City’s Gabriel Jesus has been an added boost to the star-studded team since his £27 million switch from Palmeiras.
The Brazilian star made his full debut last Saturday against Crystal Palace, setting up Raheem Sterling with a wonderful pass for City’s first goal in the 43rd minute.
Brazilians are already admiring their gem as a good replacement for Neymar, but Pablo Zabaleta has advised his South American neighbors, including City, to lessen the striker’s burden by not comparing him to anyone.
The 32-year-old Argentine defender said: “No, we can’t think like that.
“He’s young and very clever and has to work hard to show his quality.
“He did well against Tottenham – it was a great start. But he needs time and we have to be patient.
“We can’t expect too much straight away. He’s young, he will have time to improve and we will help him to settle.
“He has a great future. I saw a few games of him in Brazil, he has quality, and I am sure he will be a very important player for us in the future.”
Image shows Philippe Coutinho, Neymar and Gabriel Jesus.
Zabaleta, a former Espanyol player and one of the longest serving players in the club, has seen City transform to one of the best clubs in the world.
Based on the invaluable experience he has gathered since arriving Emirates Stadium in 2008, the Argentina international footballer says for any player to be successful in his career, he must be self-disciplined on and off the pitch.
In his words: “For young players like him, they need to believe in their ability, why they are here, and what Manchester City is as a club today.
“It’s very demanding, the performance, behavior, discipline and commitment that’s needed,” Zabaleta added.
“Everything that the big clubs need from their players. Then they have the right qualities if they are in the team, and they can have big success at this club.”
Jack Pitt-Brooke, a sports analyst with The Independent described Jesus, Leroy Sane and Sterling as City’s future after watching the trio destroy their opponents with a fluid attacking style.
“Sane, Sterling and Gabriel tore Palace apart, combining for City’s brilliant first two goals, before Yaya Toure capped it off with a brilliant free-kick at the end,” Pitt-Brooke said..
“They all played with imagination, skill, but above all with pace, providing exactly the type of threat Guardiola wants from his forwards. Guardiola hailed them post-match as the ‘future’ of the club, and it was easy to imagine watching them that this could be City’s front line for the next 10 years.”
Jesus joined City as a 19-year-old after playing in the Brazilian league for many years, and helping Palmeiras win their first title since 1994. He needed only a few weeks to settle in at the Etihad.
His flashy displays has been convincing to fans, teammates and club coach Pep Guardiola. But Pablo Zabaleta thinks it’s too early to start seeing him as the “new Neymar”.
The Brazilian youngster proved himself with a 10-minute performance against Tottenham last week and like they say, “twice a charm,” he showed off some more silky moves against Crystal Palace.
Image shows Pablo Zabaleta, Gabriel Jesus, Sergio Aguero and coach Pep Guardiola.
“He [Jesus] helped us a lot. He’s so aggressive, even if he’s not a tall guy,” Guardiola told reporters at a post-match press conference.
“It’s the first game, so it’s not easy for him to communicate. He doesn’t speak English. He will need time. But he makes a lot of movements. The pass for the first goal is outstanding.
“We cannot forget, we play with 21, 20 and 21 (sic) — three strikers so, so young. It’s the future for Man City and all three played good.”