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Balotelli overlooked by Italy for 'ethics breach'
Published : 26 Feb 2012 21:16:54
Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli was dropped from the Italy squad for Wednesday's friendly international against the United States in Genoa for breaking coach Cesare Prandelli's ethical code.
Balotelli scored in City's 3-0 win over Blackburn Rovers on Saturday, but he had previously been suspended for four matches after a stamp on Tottenham Hotspur's Scott Parker in January.
"I don't want players who commit reaction fouls and get sent off," Prandelli had already warned on Saturday.
"He seems a little agitated to me. When I say we have to reach the European Championship prepared, I mean I don't want to see players who, at the first sign of difficulty, commit reaction fouls and get sent off, leaving their team-mates to struggle with 10 men."
Balotelli has been replaced in the squad by Roma's 20-year-old striker Fabio Borini.
Italy's 23-man squad for Wednesday's friendly international against the United States in Genoa:
Goalkeepers: Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Salvatore Sirigu (Paris Saint-Germain/FRA), Morgan De Sanctis (Napoli), Edoardo Viviano (Palermo)
Defenders: Ignazio Abate (AC Milan), Federico Balzaretti (Palermo), Leonardo Bonucci, Giorgio Chiellini (both Juventus), Domenico Criscito (Zenit Saint-Petersburg/RUS), Christian Maggio (Napoli), Andrea Barzagli (Juventus), Angelo Ogbonna (Torino), Davide Astori (Cagliari)
Midfielders: Daniele De Rossi (Roma), Claudio Marchisio (Juventus), Riccardo Montolivo (Fiorentina), Thiago Motta (Paris Saint-Germain/FRA), Antonio Nocerino (AC Milan), Andrea Pirlo (Juventus)
Attackers: Sebastian Giovinco (Parma), Giampaolo Pazzini (Inter Milan), Alessandro Matri (Juventus), Fabio Borini (AS Roma)