Mad Mario or Super Mario?

Many nicknames have been used to identify new Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli.

In Italy he simply used to be Super Mario for his own fans and Mad Mario for the rivals.

Two names that explains perfectly this extremely talented 20 years old player, who has already achieved what for big stars spent an entire career: fame and damnation.

Football talking Balotelli is such a talent. Mario has a strong physic structure 190 cm per 89 kg, technical ability, great dribbling, pace, sense of goal, and strong and precise set piece. These qualities allow he to play anywhere in the front line.

Balotelli conquered Inter Milan supporters becoming rapidly one of their most loved idols. He plays with number 45 on his shoulders because he wants to be unique, as he declared: “Every good player plays with 10 but nobody does with 45. I want people seeing a number 45 and think of me.”

During his first two seasons at Inter Milan the crowd at S.Siro Stadium simply went crazy for him, they loved him not only for his undoubted qualities as footballer.

Soon he became a character for his irreverent attitude and the disarming frankness of his talks.                                                                                                                 Once after a Champions League game between Inter Milan and Manchester United when Cristiano Ronaldo refused to exchange the t-shirts he looked the Portuguese champion saying: “I’ll become better than you.”

The trouble at Inter Milan started last November when he admitted in an interview he supported AC Milan when was younger, the biggest Inter Milan rival, causing the amusing of his supporters who felt betrayed.

At a few days from the Champions League game against Chelsea last season in April, during a training he commented AC Milan victory (AC Milan crosstown rivals went one point under Inter Milan in the table) saying toward Mourinho: “We are catching you”.

Mourinho left the player out of the squad until when Mario apologised in front of team, but soon another episode ruined definitely his relationship with Inter Milan. During the Champions League semi-final against Barcelona he played a few minutes showing a scarce attitude, giving the ball away in two circumstances. The supporters booed him causing his reaction. At the end of the game while his teammates were celebrating the victory he threw his jersey on the ground causing more disappointment among the fans.

Some of them physically attacked the players in the garage under the stadium forcing Balotelli to leave the stadium quickly.

Balotelli is all this, a young player with an immense talent and a difficult personality.

Samuel Eto’o once has said of him: “I’ve never seen a young player as strong as Mario in my career.”

Roberto Mancini his first coach at Inter Milan, who Balotelli will join at Manchester City, is probably the best man to train him, as when he was a player he had the same talent and impetuous temperament.

Don’t expect any exultation after a goal, not even for amazing ones. Mario will do celebrate when he will score in the World Cup final, he has said once.



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