Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has revealed that Mario Balotelli is missed by his former team-mates at the Etihad Stadium.
The Italian international, who is notorious for his temperamental behaviour and farcical stunts, was sold by City in the January window to AC Milan after his training session bust-up with Mancini earlier in the season.
City’s patience with the talented forward was already running thin. His physical altercation with the manager eventually forced the club to do away with him, selling him for an estimated £19m to Milan.
Balotelli may have been a pain in the head for Mancini, but he has proved to be profitable acquisition for the Italian giants. The striker seems to be enjoying his spell in his home country, having already scored seven goals in just six league appearances.
Although many believe that Balotelli’s disciplinary issues had cost City dearly, Mancini revealed that his team-mates still held charitable views about him.
The Italian tactician said that the striker was badly missed by his former colleagues at the Etihad Stadium and was delighted to see the 22-year-old do well in the Serie A.
“His team-mates miss him very much," Mancini told Panorama. "They miss his genius.
“He can do what others cannot even think of. We are all very happy he is doing well at Milan.”
The 48-year-old also insisted that he never carried any doubts over the striker’s potential, but accused him of not utilising his abilities to full affect at City.
He added: “Mario has everything to be one of the best in the world, but at the moment he only uses 50 per cent of his ability. That is what made me angry.”
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