Since signing for Man City Mario Balotelli has claimed he’s the next Messi and become allergic to grass. I’ve had enough already...
I don’t know where to start. Self styled “Super” Mario Balotelli has only been at Man City five minutes, yet he’s given us five years’ worth of ball ache. Yes, he’s got inexplicable natural talent. We’re talking off the radar, intergalactical, Keanu Reeves in the Matrix “He is the one” footballing instinct. But all of these head spinning positives are unfortunately nutmegged by his overwhelming propensity to make Keanu look like Einstein. Supporters of Mario claim that this is due to his age, that we were all young once and we all make mistakes. But we didn't all beat up our work colleagues and narrowly avoid murder in a high-speed sports car collision. I did actually once get into a mild scrap with one of the "chefs" in my TGI Friday's job and reversed my mum's Nissan Micra into a wall, but on so many levels this is not comparable.
Watching Mario in the flesh during a match, it's clear that he's not right in the head. Where other troublesome footballers would kick off with the opposition players alone, Mario spends most of the 90 kicking off with his teammates, the ref, the crowd and Mancini. Against West Ham he lost the plot because he didn't win a couple of free kicks which he didn't deserve to get given anyway. He went bananas, kicking West Ham players indiscriminately and shouting at nobody in particular like a schoolboy who had been told to get the milk for the rest of the class from the canteen. Mancini substituted him soon after, prompting a moody walk off the field which warranted a Vic and Bob style, Prada handbag brandishing "Ooooooh!"
The guy just can’t stay out of trouble or simply shut his gob. If he's not shouting at thin air during a game then he's telling the media that he's the best player in the world and has no idea who Jack Wilshere is. While this may be amusing it's also highly embarrassing, especially when he follows it up by playing football like a miserable death row inmate. His behaviour only stokes the growing flames of resentment for Man City; apparently we deserve to have a tool like Balotelli ruining our season. We don’t.
Here’s a hit list of Balo’s controversial and baffling moments since joining last summer. Cue Top Of The Pops Music…
Perhaps years ago when football was football and footballers weren't media savvy underwear models, he could have been slapped into shape by a stalwart City captain such as Mike Doyle
- On his first appearance for the club in the Europa League, he comes on as a 2nd half substitute. He scores, gets booked for a wild challenge and gets injured – he’s out for 6 weeks.
- Writes off his Audi R8 after driving head on into a BMW. Onlookers say he was “lucky to be alive.”
- In Brescia, he gets caught by police trying to sneak into a women’s prison with his brother.
- Scores 2 fantastic goals against West Brom before getting sent off for a needless challenge. He’s banned for 3 matches.
- Tells an Italian newspaper he intends to play for AC Milan “sooner rather than later.”
- Kicks off with Jerome Boateng after a tackle in training. They have to be separated by Kolo Toure.
- Wins Golden Boy trophy, before claiming to be the next Messi and to never have heard of Jack Wilshere.
- Gets in a hissy fit at the West Ham game after failing to score, despite the team leading comfortably. Walks off in a mood.
- Scores an easy hat trick against Aston Villa, but still plays with a puzzingly poor attitude.
- Fails to appear for the second half of the unforgivingly tough Europa League leg tie in Kiev. After eventually strolling out onto the pitch, he’s substituted 10 minutes later with a mystery illness. It turns out he’s allergic to grass. Or is it just hard work?
- In the home leg of the ManCity V Dynamo Kiev tie, he misses 2 sitters, before taking his frustration out on Goran Popov by drop kicking him in the chest. Gets sent off for the 2nd time in his City career. City go on to score, but with 10 men their endeavours come to nothing. They’re out of the cup. Balotelli apologises to the players after the game. Wow.
Mancini has embraced Balotelli in the hope that his faith will be rewarded. But Balo is beyond repair. Perhaps years ago when football was football and footballers weren't media savvy underwear models, he could have been slapped into shape by a stalwart City captain such as Mike Doyle. But this modern era is more sympathetic to the weak minded. Mario is exactly this, and sympathy is wasted on him. City fans will give him just one more chance. But any more cock ups, and it might not just be his head on the block.
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