Considered one of the greatest talents in Italian football in his early days, Mario Balotelli even began to openly dream of the Ballon d’Or. Fifteen years later, he is very, very far from it… A look back at the career of a terrible child who had everything to be a crack and who, at 32, wears the colors of FC Sion.
Trained to AC Lumezzane, Mario Balotelli signed his first professional contract in 2007 after joining Inter in 2006. During his career he played in 12 different clubs. With Inter where he made his debut, he played 3 years in the jersey of the Nerazzurri 86 games for 28 goals scored. What ruined his career was his behavior towards his coaches. During his time at Inter Milan, Mario Balotelli exceeded certain limits several times, particularly during the 2009-2010 season when Inter was under the orders of Jose Mourinho. The player even went so far as to show up on a TV show wearing the rival’s shirt AC Milan which had greatly annoyed Nerazzurri who asked the management to put Balotelli at the door. His attitude inside the pitch is so bad that even Javier Zanettihistoric former captain of Inter, never failed to remind the Italian: “Mario needs to focus on what he can do on the pitch, he can’t let himself behave like that anymore.”
His behavior, his worst enemy
On his side Jose Mourinho had made a statement two later, in 2012 on the case Mario Balotelli that he had to deal with Inter : “I could write a 200-page book about my two years at Inter with Mario, but the book wouldn’t be a drama, it would be a comedy. I remember once when we went to play in Kazan in Champions League In this game, all my attackers were injured, I had really problems and Mario was the only one… Mario received a yellow card in the 42nd minute so when I arrived at the locker room at halftime , I spend about 14 minutes out of the 15 available talking only to Mario. I said to him: “Mario, I can’t change you, I don’t have a scorer on the bench, so don’t touch anyone and only plays with the ball. If we lose the ball, we don’t react. If someone provokes you, no reaction, if the referee makes a mistake, no reaction.” 46th minute: red card.”During his visit to Inter, Mario Balotelli won four major trophies: the UEFA Champions Leaguethere Serie A three times, the Italian Cup and the Italian Super Cup.
Manchester City, the best period of his career
His transition to Manchester City is certainly made of ups and downs but it remains the best of his career. Mario Balotelli played 80 matches with Manchester City for a total of 30 goals scored between 2010 and 2013. As at Inter, Mario Balotelli does not make good use of his talent and continues in the provocation on the ground. He nevertheless was behind the coronation of Manchester City in Premier League during the famous match, season 2011-2012, against Queen Park Rangers delivering the assist for the goal by Aguero. A great way to end a full season with 32 games for 17 goals scored. But as to Inter, Balotelli has not matured and continues his bad habits and excessive behavior. His trainer Roberto Mancini declares: “I told him, if you played with me 10 years ago, I might punch you in the head every day. There are different ways to help a guy like Mario. I don’t I don’t talk every day otherwise I would need a psychologist, but I talk to him because I don’t want him to lose his quality If Mario doesn’t become one of the best players in the world, it will be his fault because he has everything. I don’t want him to lose his talent.”In 2013, he left Manchester City to join theAC Milana decision he will regret until today: “Now I’m older and I know I shouldn’t have left Manchester City at that time. All these years I’ve seen City improve, improve and improve. J could have been like Sergio Aguero here for years. If I had had the mindset I have now when I was at City, I probably would have won a Ballon d’Or. I’m sure. But you know, when you grow up, you’re more mature.”
And in selection?
His first selection dates from August 10, 2010, he played a friendly match in London against Côte d’Ivoire, Italy lost (0-1) against the Elephants. His selection career was launched in 2012 when EURO where he carries Italy to the final of the lost competition against spain on the score of (4-0). Mario Balotelli find once again the scent of a major competition with the Squadra Azzurra when 2014 World Cup At Brazil. In the group of death with england, Uruguay and the Costa Rica, italy opens the ball against the English. Mario Balotelli is the only scorer in this match thanks to a beautiful header which puts 8 months of scarcity against the cages. Italy will ultimately go no further than the group stage, Balotelli completely misses the match against Uruguay which earned a direct elimination for italy. Between 2014 and 2018, the period Antonio Contethe player is completely absent from the lists, he is called up only once for the two matches of November 2014 against the Croatia (Euro-2016 qualifiers) and friendly match against Albania. In 2018, he regained the Italian jersey thanks to his former coach at Manchester City, Roberto Mancini.