Manchester City

It’s Mancini, Not Mario Who Should Hit The Road

Why always me? Was a quote that had the football world laughing – except Man United fans – when Mario Balotelli scored City’s 1st in the 6-1 romp of rivals United at Old Trafford, but now its seems “why always me?” refers to unquestionable bad behaviour on the Italians part.

Whether it be reckless red cards or off-the-field antics such as car crashes or firework displays the life of Mario Balotelli is certainly never dull.

His latest mishap come at the Emirates during Man City’s must win match against Arsenal yesterday. The 21-year-old was lucky to escape a straight red card for a horrific challenge on Alex Song but was later shown red for two yellow cards, coupled with the fact City lost 1-0 basically gift wrapping the title for United has prompted Roberto Mancini to claim Balotelli is finished at City (where have we heard that before?).

Speaking after the match Mancini was asked whether Balotelli would be sold in the summer and had this to say:

“Probably – but I don’t know. I am finished. We have six games and he will not play in the next six games.

“I think that Mario should have been sent off after 10 minutes. Balotelli is a fantastic player, I can continue to play with Mario on the pitch but every time we’ll risk having him sent off.

“He needs to change his behaviour if he wants to improve his life. I’ve seen players finished in two or three years with huge talent. He needs to change. He must change it. I hope for him he will.

“He’s not a bad guy. He’s a fantastic player. But, at this moment, I’m very sorry for him because he continues to lose his talent, his quality.

“I hope, for him, he can understand that he’s in a bad way for his future, and he can change his behaviour in the future.”

How much truth is in these comments I don’t know, as we all know what happened with he Carlos Tevez incident.

Now most will be reading this and think I’m just another Balotelli basher like all the other newspapers today, well actually I have some sympathy for the guy.

Obviously I do not condone his behaviour – although some incidents, such as the firework display in his bathroom has been amusing – but the reckless red cards and car crashes are not helping anyone. Mancini however seems to be playing the scape-goat tactic as he knows relinquishing a 8-point lead to fall 8-points behind United and thereby finish the season trophy less will raise questions over his future.

He has used Balotelli as the excuse for losing at the Emirates and relinquishing the title to United. Well I do believe he is in charge of substitutions and all and sundrie could see Balotelli needed to be taken off yesterday, he was the one who ‘didn’t prepare his team properly’ for tough away games at Goodison Park and Swansea because he thought they were going to be ‘easy games’, and I do believe he is the one who has been very negative about their title chances since United took over at the top.

He also blew the loss of Yaya Toure – due to the African Cup of Nations – out of all proportion basically condemning his team as they couldn’t play without him and he didn’t have enough cover in his position.

Balotelli has undoubtedly made mistakes and his attitude has the improve if he ever wants to be half the player he could be, however, he has scored some important goals for City this year which has kept them in the title race and for Mancini to attempt to place the blame for his teams short-comings this season on a 21-year-old is almost laughable.

If City want to reach the heights their team is capable of then I feel a managerial change is needed. Mancini started the season playing an open, attack minded game which suited his players but since ‘squeaky bum time’ he has returned to his over cautious defensive approach which saw them fall short last season and evidently this season as well.

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