He's a vital part of one of the biggest football clubs in the world at the moment, but Manchester City star Gabriel Jesus has revealed how just a few years ago he was painting the streets back in Brazil.
In a series of pictures the 20-year-old posted on Instagram, he can be seen painting the cobbled roads in his neighbourhood ahead of the 2014 World Cup, which was held in Brazil.
The striker must have been playing for Palmeiras in Sao Paulo’s under-17 championship when the photos were taken. He scored 37 goals in 22 games that season.
The photos are a testament to Jesus' rags-to-riches story – he currently makes a reported £75,000-a-week, according to a report in The Sun.
Jesus grew up in Jardim Peri, a tough, uncompromising favela just outside of Sao Paulo where he first started playing for a charity setup as an 8-year-old. Life at the favela was tough, but playing football there was even tougher.
“They went into tackles to break your leg," Jesus told Manchester City's website in an interview after signing for the club."But still sometimes I’d play as many as three or four matches a day: I couldn’t get enough of it. I can’t put my mind to anything else. I’m not interested in hanging out or partying. I think I’m obsessed.”
That dedication got him to one of Brazil's biggest football clubs, Palmeiras before soon leading him into the Brazilian football team.
In fact, his rise in football over the last few months has been so prolific that it has gotten even Sergio Aguero admitting that he may have to step aside for him.
Even Brazil legend Zico recently predicted that Jesus is on the path to becoming the best in the world someday.
“If he continues to grow, he has everything to achieve that,” he told ESPN FC. “He demonstrates every day that he’s a great professional, with fantastic quality. Gabriel is a player who pursues hard work with competence. He has everything to become one of the greatest in Brazilian football history.”
Published Date: Jun 02, 2017 17:59 PM | Updated Date: Jun 02, 2017 18:50 PM