Manchester City have formalised the transfer of Brazil striker Gabriel Jesus from Palmeiras in time for him to feature against Tottenham this weekend.
The 19-year-old had agreed a move from his homeland to the Etihad Stadium back in the summer and had joined up with City earlier this month, yet his registration with his new club did not go through in time for him to make the squad for last weekend’s trip to Everton.
City confirmed on Thursday morning that Jesus could now be unveiled as Pep Guardiola’s sixth signing and that he is available to make his debut against Spurs on Saturday.
Jesus, 19, had decided to remain with Palmeiras until the end of the Brazilian season and helped them win their first league title since 1994 before departing.
Prior to that he won an Olympic gold medal with his country having scored three times in the men’s football tournament in Rio and he was then promoted to the senior Brazil team, for whom he has scored five times in six games.
“Gabriel is a technically gifted player who was chased by some of Europe’s biggest clubs and we are delighted he decided to join City,” director of football Txiki Begiristain told mancity.com.
“He has the potential to become one of the best attacking players in the game and we look forward to watching him develop further here in Manchester.
“I think with Pep Guardiola as manager and the squad we have here, Jesus has the perfect platform to reach his full potential.”
— Manchester City (@ManCity) January 19, 2017
City will hope his arrival can provide a spark after their 4-0 loss at Goodison Park on Sunday and Jesus has revealed it was the influence of Guardiola that swayed him to join the club.
“It’s a club that always competes for the titles in the competitions it enters,” he said.
“That was an important factor and also because of the manager, Pep Guardiola and his squad. He was the only manager who called me so I was very pleased.
“Given who the manager is and everything he’s done… his intelligence… my desire is to work with him and learn more from him every day, as well as from the other players in the squad.
“I want to win titles and Manchester City is a club that is used to winning.
“One thing I’ve noticed is that, like me, he (Guardiola) is mad about football. He lives football 24 hours a day. I’m like that too.
“When I’m not playing, I’m watching, or playing a video game, doing something linked to football. I think this is very important, that I’m the same as him and I hope to learn.
“As I said, I’ve come here to learn, I’m going to give my all to learn more and more from him and my team-mates.”