Mario interest upsets Mancini

City boss disappointed by media glare on young striker

By Ben Collins.   Last Updated: 09/09/11 1:25pm

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Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini claims he is more frustrated with the media attention on Mario Balotelli than the striker's behaviour.

The 21-year-old courted controversy again while on international duty, during which time he visited a prison along with Italy coach Cesare Prandelli and captain Gianluigi Buffon.

Balotelli was thought to be using his iPad while on the bench for last Friday's Euro 2012 qualifier against the Faroe Islands, which is said to have caused a rift with coach Prandelli.

While Italian Football Association vice-president Demetrio Albertini feels Balotelli can still develop into a top player, he admitted "his attitudes are not ideal at times" and believes that "sometimes he mixes up football with the media aspect".

But Mancini reckons that the media blow most incidents involving Balotelli out of proportion and believes he will soon become more mature.

Big situation

"I'm disappointed because everything that Mario does becomes a big situation," he told Sky Sports News.

"He played well for Italy on Tuesday, which is important, and it's important that tomorrow he can play.

"Mario is 21 years old. He can change in two months, three months or six months. I think that maybe the moment he changes his mind he changes everything."

Balotelli showed his worth on the field by coming off the bench against Slovenia in midweek and playing an influential role as Giampaolo Pazzini secured a late 1-0 victory.

The result clinched Italy's qualification for Euro 2012 as Group C winners and Balotelli will now hope to be given his first Premier League appearance of the season during City's home game against Wigan on Saturday.

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