Gabriel Jesus inspires Man City - but what now for Aguero?

Brazilian striker teams up with Leroy Sane and Raheen Sterling as Guardiola plans for the future

Gabriel Jesus celebrates scoring against West Ham
(Image credit: GLYN KIRK / Getty)

Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus made an instant impact on his first Premier League start to help Pep Guardiola's side trounce West Ham 4-0.

The 19-year-old Brazilian, who arrived the Citizens last month, after being signed in the summer, scored one and set up another in a man-of-the match performance that promised much for the future.

It was only his third appearance for the club, but already the £27m recruit has made a "devastating difference", says Jason Burt of the Daily Telegraph.

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He writes: "Suddenly there is an impetus to Manchester City’s season, a verve, a velocity, a samba swagger, a one-touch destructiveness."

Sergio Aguero, who was left out of Guardiola's starting XI, "has a fight on his hands to remain top striker".

Jesus was "at the heart of everything City mustered, tormenting befuddled West Ham players at will", says Dominic Fifield of The Guardian.

"Already the Brazilian looks the successor in waiting to Aguero, the very notion that he will improve in the years ahead enough to reduce defenders to gibbering wrecks... He was utterly irrepressible on his first Premier League start."

Such was his impact that the decision to drop hapless goalkeeper Claudio Bravo barely got a mention.

Afterwards, Guardiola hailed the young Brazilian in an unexpected way - comparing his signing to buying a watermelon. "You never know," he said. "You have to open to see if it's good or not. The prospect was good. Jesus is a fighter with instinct for the goal."

He was also excited about his youthful forward line of Jesus, Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling, who have a combined age of 62, less than that of Australian Open finalists Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal.

Guardiola described the trio, who had a hand in all four goals, as "the future of the club", adding: "You don't see strikers as young as that at big European clubs at the moment."

But while the future is bright for City and Jesus, pressure clouds are gathering for Aguero.

Jesus has the attributes that Guardiola values in a striker and his "workrate is something to behold", says Jack Gaughan of MailOnline. "The way in which he harries defenders and forces mistakes is similar to those who so excelled for Guardiola at his previous clubs."

Aguero, on the other hand, is more prolific in front of goal but allows others to do the running for him. He is also a central striker, while Jesus can operate anywhere in the front three.

"The goals City scored at West Ham - not forgetting the obvious impact of Leroy Sane, Raheem Sterling and Kevin De Bruyne - offered an insight into how Guardiola envisions them going forward," says Gaughan. "Frightening one-touch football, akin to a slick five-a-side team, with everyone involved, and Jesus was at the heart of that. The unselfish passes he picks make things look easy."

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