Gabriel Jesus admits he was disappointed not to be allowed to take Manchester City‘s late penalty in Sunday’s goalless draw at Liverpool.
Riyad Mahrez fired over from 12 yards five minutes from time as the Premier League champions spurned the chance to win at Anfield for only the second time in 37 years.
With regular penalty-taker Sergio Aguero off the field, Jesus showed his interest when referee Martin Atkinson pointed to the spot but manager Pep Guardiola sent out a message telling him to defer to Mahrez.
“Obviously I’m not happy,” said Jesus. “Similar to Riyad, I’ve been practising (penalties). I would like to have taken it, I was confident, so I was not happy that they did not allow me.
“However, it was important that we didn’t lose.”
Guardiola said that he had been impressed by Mahrez’s penalty-taking in training but later admitted he had been unaware the £60million summer signing had missed four of his previous seven spot-kicks.
The City boss went on to say sorry to Jesus and the Brazilian accepted the apology.
The 21-year-old striker, who has scored just two goals this season, said: “Pep spoke with me. This is part of football, sometimes these things happen. I will support Riyad if the manager chooses him again.”
Mahrez put a brave face on his error, which saw him blast well over the bar.
The Algerian said: “It is part of football, you have to go forward and stay strong. Sometimes you score, sometimes you miss.
“But the most important thing is the performance was very good.”
The result left City, Liverpool and Chelsea in a three-way tie for the Premier League lead on 20 points after eight games.