Milan forward Mario Balotelli has admitted the one thing he misses about his time at Manchester City... the club’s supporters.
The 23-year-old striker made 54 league appearances for the Blues after arriving from Inter in 2010, scoring 20 goals on top of providing the stoppage-time assist for Sergio Aguero’s dramatic Premier League title-clincher in 2012.
That proved the pinnacle of his City tenure, however, as Balotelli’s relationship with manager Roberto Mancini steadily deteriorated the following season.
He missed 11 matches after challenging the club’s decision to fine him two weeks’ wages for a poor disciplinary record, and after scoring one goal in 14 Premier League outings in 2012/13 he returned to the San Siro by joining Milan for £19 million.
The Italy international is enjoying being back on home soil. Balotelli has bagged 21 goals in just 29 Serie A appearances for the Rossoneri despite their struggles which have resulted in Clarence Seedorf replacing Massimiliano Allegri as coach.
However, ‘Super Mario’ still has a few fond memories of his time in England. Speaking exclusively in the March 2014 issue of FourFourTwo, he says:
“I miss the fans. I’ll tell you what I don’t miss, though. I don’t miss the food, or the weather, or the stupid way you’re always expected to drive over there… But yeah, the City fans, I miss them. Even though the Milan fans are just as good.
“I have to say, most of my memories of Manchester are really happy ones. I enjoyed myself there. It wasn’t that much of a culture shock for me to go to England. There’s not a great deal of difference between the two clubs.”
Read the full interview with Mario Balotelli in the March 2014 issue of FourFourTwo, which also means our exclusive chat with Manuel Pellegrini, origins of the terrace chant, on the ground with troubled Hyde, England's first foreign legion, David Ginola One-on-One, football's fashion disasters, trending in the Champions League, and is passion all it's cracked up to be? Available in print and in a specially-designed-for-iPad version.