It makes me smile when I get to write a short piece about the Manchester City star. Mario is without doubt one of the true characters in the premier league at the moment, and it seems his antics extend to an International level.
Italy have just unveiled their new home kit and quite nice it is too. It was worn for the first time for Italy’s friendly against Uruguay last night, well, for most people anyway. Balotelli played 5 minutes of the second half before getting involved in a mid-air clash with Uruguay’s Diego Perez. Mario was booked for the challenge and was then sent to the bench to get changed as for some reason he was sporting the old shirt during the second half, but not during the first half!
Incidentally Mario apologised to Perez for the initial challenge which was nice to see, he realised he made a misjudgement and felt it was the decent thing to do. Kudos.
As far as the shirt goes however, It would be interesting to know if this was just a simple mistake and no-one thought to tell him, maybe his team mates stitched him up, or perhaps Mario just preferred the old one and thought he would give it a whirl? What do you think?
The Balotelli list so far contains: Fireworks, the “Why always me” shirt, the back-heel attempt in the pre-season tour of the USA, his car being compounded more than 25 times since playing in England, the countless parking fines, not to mention the big wedge of cash he had in his car when pulled over the police. Couple this with the incident where he appeared to be having trouble getting his bib on, the swearing live on tv after the cup final against Stoke and the “disagreement” with Rio Ferdinand after the semi final.
I think that Mario does indeed get a lot of negative press, but he is far from the idiot that some journalists like to make him out to be, he supports a wide range of charities and after winning around 25 grand in a casino he handed a homeless guy he always sees around a wedge of cash – £1000 to be precise. He is often doing good deeds around the city but these seem to be overlooked in favour of the “Oh look what he has done now”, sure, those stories entertain, but how about some equality for a change!
My personal favourite story regarding Balotelli involves a school bully. He signed an autograph for a young kid who was hanging out outside the training ground, but on investigation the kid told Mario he was being bullied at school. Being the kind of guy he is, Mario drove the kid and his mother to the school, had a go at the bully, and then explained to the head teacher what had been happening and even sat there as the middle man while the kids settled their differences.
He may do silly things, but he is still a young man learning his profession, one day he will win footballer of the year for sure, but for now I hope he continues to just be himself and entertain us on the pitch like we all know he is capable of.
We here at footballfansonline.net would all quite happily buy the man a pint.
In other news, Manchester City are now actually selling a line of T-Shirts with the slogan “Why Always Me?” on them, replicating Mario’s undershirt he uncovered after his goal against the red side of Manchester. never miss a trick eh guys!