City 'Nutter' Played His Last Game?
Mario Balotelli is back in the news again - this time for grappling with Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini.
Controversy is nothing new for the City striker who combines genius on the pitch with utter madness off it.
Here is our run down of the most magical Mario moments...
10) Two weeks into his Manchester City career, we all knew something very special had arrived in England when we heard the tale of what happened when Balotelli crashed his Audi R8 near City's Carrington training ground. Police were quickly on the scene to breathalyse, question and search the young Italian. They were particularly keen to know why he had £5,000 in his back pocket, to which Balotelli replied in his halting English: "Because I am rich."
9) Balotelli failed to emerge for the second half of a Europa League game in freezing Kiev last season after suffering an allergic reaction to the grass. Some commentators sneered that he simply didn't fancy the minus-6 temperatures, but Balo did emerge at the airport with obvious swelling to his face, lips and tongue, as well as sores on his legs.
8) In March, Balotelli was fined a week's wages - just the £100,000, then - after being caught throwing darts at youth players from a training ground window. Luckily, he missed, suggesting he'd never win top prize on the revived TV show Bullseye. But then he's probably got a speedboat already.
7) Happily, something good has come from the unfortunate incidents listed above. It's the City chant which goes: "Oooh Balotelli, he's a striker, he's good at darts. An allergy to grass but when he plays he's f***ing class. He drives around in Moss Side with a wallet full of cash."
6) Mario's work in the FA Cup final against Stoke was exemplary, but he saved his best for the post-match TV interview. Asked if that had been his best game of the season, he replied with the words: "My whole season was shit. Can I say that?" Er, no.
5) Balotelli's slightly skewed sense of humour has given us great moments like his five-fingered hat, which recalled the rubber glove worn by the dastardly Feathers McGraw in The Wrong Trousers. There was also this lovely moment with Edin Dzeko...
4) If this bib-related confusion had happened to any other player, it would have been the No.1 highlight of their careers. With Mario, it's not even in the top three:
3) In October last year, Mario and 17-year-old brother Enock were arrested strolling through the grounds of a women's prison in Brescia, near Milan. Balo is said to have told police that curiosity got the better of him and "just fancied having a look".
2) How do you prepare for a Manchester derby? There's the early-to-bed route and then there's Mario's own sweet way. On Saturday morning, less than 36 hours away from his superb two-goal performance in what has become known as the 0161 6-1, Mario was being pulled away from his mansion by the fire brigade after an attempt to let off fireworks in his bathroom - as you do - went awry. So badly awry that Mario had to live in a hotel until the damage is repaired.
1) What could possibly top all that? The unconfirmed story that Mario's mum, after consultations with his new cleaner, sent her lad off to John Lewis to buy a list of supplies including an iron, a mop and a Hoover. A few hours later, Mario's car pulled up with a van behind - which promptly unloaded a giant trampoline, two Vespa scooters and no cleaning products whatsoever...
Source: Manchester City MAD
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