Belfast Telegraph

Mario Balotelli's iPad raises questions in Italy camp

Italy team manager Gigi Riva has brushed aside reports that Manchester City forward Mario Balotelli has fallen out with Azzurri coach Cesare Prandelli.

Prandelli was reportedly unimpressed by Balotelli's approach during his warm-up for Friday's Euro 2012 qualifier against the Faroe Islands, and the fact the player took his iPad with him as he watched the match from the bench.

"Balotelli's situation is nothing to worry about," Riva said of the player, who came on for the final six minutes. "These are small things that happen in every team.

"He only played a few minutes against the Faroe Islands so he couldn't do much.

"But in every training, Mario gives his best.

"Prandelli did not watch Balotelli's warm-up because he was watching the game.

"Let's not create a problem where there is none."

Earlier this year, the former Inter Milan striker was dropped from the Italy squad for two qualifiers after breaking Prandelli's 'code of conduct' while playing for his club.

Balotelli was sent off during a Europa League match for a high tackle on a Dynamo Kiev defender.

Italy take on Slovenia tomorrow in Florence, with Balotelli again set to start on the bench.

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph