Jesus admits to struggling with weight of expectation
Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus has admitted he struggled to cope with the weight of expectation on his shoulders prior to his recent goalscoring run.
Jesus has filled in for injured team-mate Sergio Aguero over the past fortnight and scored a hat-trick in Wednesday's 4-1 Champions League win over Dinamo Zagreb.
That made it five goals in three matches for the Brazil international, who ended an eight-match wait for a goal with a brace against Burnley last week.
Jesus revealed his confidence took a battering during his recent goalless run, but he refused to give up and is pleased to have been rewarded.
"Honestly, last month I was no good and I wasn't happy," he said, quoted by several British newspapers. "I played nine or 10 games, didn't score and I missed chances so I'm not happy with that."
"When this happens, of course I cannot be happy. Sometimes football is like that. You have to keep working hard and try to score, try to help the team and that's what I have done.
"I cannot talk about other players, I can only talk about me, but when I'm not happy with myself I want to shoot myself in the head because it's difficult for me.
"I take it [personally] of course. 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 I put too much pressure on myself.
“In my head it was like that. Always I think, ‘Wow, I have to score’ because I'm playing for a big club in big competitions with big players and it's like I shoot in my head. I say, 'Next game'.
"Sometimes it can happen that you don't score. It happened with me but I keep working and this month has been a good month for me."
With Aguero doubtful for Sunday's trip to Arsenal, Jesus acknowledged the pressure is still on to score goals.
The 22-year-old, who made it 101 career goals for Palmeiras, City and Brazil with his treble in Croatia, said: "I try all the time to do my best and sometimes I cannot do it and that's the way.
"But it's important for me to keep scoring goals because I have to. I'm at a big club and play with big players.
"I'm in a single competition with Sergio - a friendly competition. I hope that when he plays, he scores. I always want him to help the team and his team-mates.
"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 but I'm happy to reach 101 goals in my career."