Palmeiras veteran and former Real Madrid and Bayern Munich star Ze Roberto has revealed that he thinks teenage forward Gabriel Jesus, dubbed the ‘New Neymar’, would be better off joining Los Blancos rather than his old club in Germany, or Juventus in Italy.
All three European giants have been heavily linked with Gabriel, but if it were to come down to a split decision, Ze Roberto would advise his young team-mate to choose the Bernabeu.
Speaking to AS, the midfielder explained that Bayern contacted him earlier this year to get a better understanding of Gabriel’s off-field character having been burned by Brazilian talents in the past.
But despite giving a positive review to the reigning German champions, who recently completed the signing of 18-year-old Portuguese prodigy Renato Sanches, Ze Roberto believes Real Madrid have more to offer Gabriel.
“I think at this point, Real Madrid would be the best option,” he said, citing style of play and the individuals already at the club.
“How Zidane plays, with almost three forwards – Gabriel can play all three positions of the BBC [Bale, Benzema, Cristiano],” Ze Roberto added.
“For me, it is the ideal club for Gabriel because he could learn behind three big players in Bale, Cristiano Ronaldo and Benzema. And watching Zidane give opportunities to youth players last season, I think it would be ideal for him to have the minutes you need to go growing opportunity.”
Still playing at the age of 42, Ze Roberto has seen Gabriel’s progression at close quarters since the young forward burst onto the scene at Palmeiras in 2015. And he doesn’t think he’s witnessed a better Brazilian talent other than Neymar in the last 10 years.
“He’s the best player I’ve seen out of an academy in Brazil since I returned from Germany in 2006. And I’ve seen many,” the former La Liga and Bundesliga champion said.
“In addition to the spectacular talent, I have not seen anyone more focused on football than him. That’s the hardest thing to see in a player from the academy. He does not let it go to his head and he is not dazzled by fame.
“After Neymar, Gabriel Jesus is the best I’ve seen emerge from Brazil in these 10 years.”
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