Mario Balotelli’s sister is unhappy at the continuos castigation
the Italy striker receives in England for his multiple misdemeanors
and perceived petulance.
Cristina Balotelli acknowledged her adopted brother, who turns
21 on Friday, is a flawed character who is still developing as a
footballer. But she said the constant stream of criticism has been
unwarranted since he joined Manchester City last year.
In an interview with The Associated Press, Cristina said people
in England are too ”ready to attack an Italian footballer, or
coach, when they are not brilliant.”
The forward has rarely been out of the headlines, with former
Manchester United captain Gary Neville branding some of his conduct
an ”embarrassment to his club.”
That comment came after Balotelli had squared up to United
defender Nemanja Vidic before being substituted in Sunday’s
Community Shield loss and racing straight down the Wembley Stadium
”Mario might have not been brilliant, but putting all the blame
on him for the defeat is totally unfair,” Cristina Balotelli said.
”Soccer is teamwork.”
City manager Roberto Mancini also defended him, refuting any
suggestion that the Wembley incident was an act of petulance.
”Every time Mario does something people read things into it,”
said Mancini, a fellow Italian.
Patrick Vieira, a City player last season who now has an
executive role at the club, says it’s time for Balotelli to
”People forget how young he really is,” the former France
midfielder said. ”I hope this year he will learn from his
mistakes. He is a really talented footballer and I hope he can show
everybody how good he is.”
Cristina is angriest at the media for portraying her brother in
a negative light. There are numerous stories she claims are untrue
– saying he never bought a Harley Davidson motorbike in breach of
club rules and a dead fish was not found on his Maserati, which one
paper said was apparently a sign the supporters dislike him.
”Supporters love Mario,” Cristina said. ”Every time I go to
see a football match in which he plays I find myself randomly in
groups of supporters who sing the Balotelli song: ‘Oooh Balotelliii
… he’s a striker …’
”I always tell him. I think they like him because he’s fun and
genuine like them.”
Maybe that’s why when police asked him why he had 5,000 pounds
($8,000) in his car he quipped: ”Because I’m rich.”
Comments he made to Italian TV that he didn’t like living in
Manchester brought suggestions he was trying to engineer a move
back to Inter Milan after only one season at City.
Cristina said that, like his City teammate Carlos Tevez,
Balotelli simply doesn’t like living in the northern English
”He said he’s happy with the coach and the team at Manchester
City, but he doesn’t like the city of Manchester because he misses
Brescia, his home, not Milan,” Cristina said. ”He said, ‘I miss
my family and friends but I think this experience in England will
help me grow as an individual.’
”I don’t find anything wrong in what he genuinely said. He
doesn’t like the city, you cannot expect a foreigner to like
Manchester when even the people who live there told me it is
provincial and a bit depressing cause it rains a lot. Personally, I
also don’t like the city.”
Living away from Italy for the first time hasn’t helped the
homesickness, and establishing real friendships is difficult when
playing for one of the world’s richest clubs.
”People may think it is easy to be a footballer because you
have money and popularity, but it is not easy at all sometimes,”
Cristina said. ”They are surrounded by people who treat them like
stars and stay with them because they are celebrities, not for what
they really are. They see their name and photo on papers all the
time. That’s why they often miss genuine relationship, like your
family or your best friends.”
Italy coach Cesare Prandelli has faith in Balotelli to deliver,
saying the best way for him to prove his detractors wrong is on the
”Mario needs to improve and understand that if he does so his
physical power could be devastating,” Prandelli said.
Asked about English people becoming tired of Balotelli,
Prandelli responded: ”I’m certainly not – I haven’t had him long
- Who is Stephen Archer? Murderer who killed his sister Julie with homemade petrol bomb
- Ghana coach eyes Balotelli for World Cup squad
- Emiliano Sala wreckage found on Rotterdam beach NOT from missing striker’s plane
- Terror attack is a warning to the world
- Christchurch terror attack is a warning to the world
- CIA pick Haspel defends ‘moral compass’ amid Dem attacks, shares spy credentials
Balotelli’s sister unhappy with attacks on striker have 790 words, post on www.foxsports.com at August 11, 2011. This is cached page on Talk Vietnam. If you want remove this page, please contact us.