Gabriel Jesus was decisive in Man City’s win against Premier League title rivals Chelsea by scoring the winner and I’m pleased to see the Brazilian collecting plaudits for his recent performances.
Pep Guardiola moved Jesus from a central attacking position to a wing role and so far it’s suited the player. Cutting in from the wing and quickly getting into dangerous positions boosts his influence on the team. The role suits his qualities as a very versatile and quick player.
This can also boost his confidence since he is no longer the striker with the most responsibility for scoring goals and it may allow him to play more freely. That could help him show his best qualities more regularly.
I’m sure that Brazil manager Tite is paying attention to this and wondering if Jesus can add more to Brazilian national team at the World Cup in a wing role.
It was a nightmare for Gabriel Jesus playing as a striker at the last World Cup and not scoring a single goal. He could also become a revitalised player for Brazil in a slightly different position.
Ronaldo and Fernandes won’t argue about penalties
Bruno Fernandes missed a stoppage time penalty that led to a Manchester United’s loss to Aston Villa, but he was right to take it, even though Cristiano Ronaldo was on the pitch.
Last season, Fernandes was the designated penalty-taker – and he has a great record – and Ronaldo respected that on Saturday, proving that he is more humble than many people think.
After the match, Fernandes apologized to his fans and team-mates on social media which is a good action, although not necessary.
The most important thing now for United is that Solskjaer and both players decide who should take penalties from now on. The Portuguese players are friends, and I don’t imagine they are going to fall out, and damage the team’s unity, over who takes penalties.
Raphinha has great opportunity to impress Tite
Leeds United winger Raphinha has been called up to the Brazilian national team for the first time to compete in World Cup qualifiers next month. This is his reward him for his excellent performances for Leeds in the Premier League.
He has already scored three times in six league matches this season. He’s quick and versatile, has a lot of passing and shooting quality, so he has many qualities which are valuable to a team.
Raphinha now has a great chance to prove to Tite that he deserves to be in next year’s World Cup squad, but he needs to keep up his good performances all season if he’s to become an established player in the Brazil set up.
Lucas Moura is suffering at Spurs
Spurs are going through a rough moment and their 3-1 loss to Arsenal saw several players criticised, including the Brazilian Lucas Moura.
When a team is not playing well all players tend to struggle to perform at their best and the added pressure for the bad results harms their performances.
Moura was not called up for Brazilian national team again and he might be a little frustrated with that. Since that magical night in Amsterdam in 2019, when he scored a hat-trick against Ajax in the Champions League in 2019, he had greater expectations about playing more regularly for his club and national team.
That hasn’t happened but he is still a great player and an excellent person that I had the opportunity to play with at São Paulo FC. So I’m sure that he will find a way to come back from this troubled patch and return to helping Spurs to turn around their results. They are certainly a team with more quality than they’re currently showing.
James Rodriguez could star for PSG
The Colombian star James Rodriguez has recently moved from England to Qatar in a transfer that seems like a pit stop before he moves to PSG.
At 30, and after all the classy football he’s produced in his career, he still has the quality and fitness to keep playing at the highest level in Europe.
He has undeniable attacking qualities and, even facing problems at Everton, he continued to be a top player. He could be an asset to a French team that’s already stuffed with talent.