Jamie Jackson on 12 December 2019
Gabriel Jesus has opened up about the anguish he experiences when he fails to score for Manchester City.
The striker’s hat-trick in the 4-1 win at Dinamo Zagreb took him to 10 goals in 21 appearances this season. Yet five were scored in his past three games and Jesus was candid about the weight of expectation he feels.
“I take it personally,” he said. “I think: ‘Oh, my God, I have to score, I have to score, I have to score.’ When I have the chance sometimes I miss because I think too much and put too much pressure on myself.
“I try – I’m getting better. I’m working on scoring more and to not think about the pressure. My family help me, so I think that’s the way I try to handle the pressure.”
Jesus is enjoying an extended run because of Sergio Agüero’s absence with a thigh injury. He started three games last month and came on in another three but failed to score.
“Last month I was no good and I wasn’t happy,” Jesus said. “I didn’t score and I missed chances. When this happens I cannot be happy. Sometimes football is like this. You have to keep working hard and try to score, try to help the team.
“Always I think: ‘Wow, I have to score because I’m playing for a big club in big competitions with big players.’ I say: ‘Next game.’ Sometimes it can happen that you don’t score. It happened with me but I keep working and try. This month was a good month.”
The three goals against Dinamo on Wednesday took the 22-year-old to 101 in his career. “It was a very good night,” he said. “I’m a blessed guy. I try all the time to do my best and sometimes I cannot do it. I’m in competition with Sergio – a friendly competition. I hope that when he plays he scores.
“When I play he does the same, which is amazing. I have to learn from him because he’s scored a lot for the club and throughout his career.”
City will discover their Champions League last-16 opponents in Monday’s draw.