Belfast Telegraph

Mancini unfazed by Balotelli temper

Roberto Mancini is confident he will have no problems with Mario Balotelli's notoriously fiery temper.

The 20-year-old became Manchester City's fifth new arrival of the summer on Friday night when he signed a five-year contract with the Eastlands outfit. With Balotelli, Mancini is inheriting a combustible character, who twice angered former boss Jose Mourinho enough to stop him playing for Inter Milan, including appearing on TV in a shirt of rivals AC Milan.

"Balotelli is a young guy and he is a good guy. Like all the young men, sometimes his behaviour is not good. But it is wrong to say he is not a good man. I don't believe he will have a big problem," said the City chief.

Mancini will have to wait until the home encounter with Liverpool on August 23 to hand Balotelli his debut as the new Italy striker did not sign in time to be considered this weekend and he was not part of the squad City submitted to UEFA for their two-legged Europa League tie with Timisoara.

However, when he does eventually unleash Balotelli on the Premier League, Mancini is confident his most recent recruit will be an instant hit.

"In one or two years he could become one of the best players in the world," said Mancini.

"He is one of the best players of his age in Europe, and I very happy to be working with him again.

"I know Mario very well. I put him in the first team at Inter when he was 17.

"He can play right wing, main striker or second striker. He is a fantastic player and he can improve purely because he has changed countries.

"His style of play will suit the Premier League, and because he is still so young there is a big chance for him to improve. He is a strong and exciting player, and he will be a big hit with the City fans."


From Belfast Telegraph