Mancini must accept blame for Balotelli’s failings at Man City looks at Mario Balotelli's performance against Arsenal, and Roberto Mancini's decision to sign the Italian

By Share The Match
mario balotelli
Mario Balotelli has netted 13 goals for City this term Photo:

mario balotelli

Mancini partly cuplable for Balotelli’s failings

While the mob have rounded on Mario Balotelli, condemning him for the failures of Manchester City this season, let us not forget that Roberto Mancini knew just what he was letting himself in for.

The former Internazionale striker, sent off in the 1-0 defeat by Arsenal on Sunday that ended City’s title hopes, has rightly been criticised for his part in the disaster of recent weeks, but Mancini’s faith in him is baffling.

He is a disaster waiting to happen at times, and Sunday was a prime example when he was lucky not to see red in the first half for a lunge on Alex Song.

Mancini, who got a perfect view of the challenge and admitted he should be punished retrospectively by the FA, inexplicably kept him on the pitch and that decision, as well as his negative tactics, cost City dear.

It was a game Mancini needed to win, but again he seemed happy to soak up the pressure and didn’t make a positive change until it was too late.

Balotelli deserves some credit for work ethic

Clearly you cannot defend the inexcusable but there are plenty of City players escaping some serious questions because of Balotelli’s antics against Arsenal.

It goes without saying the Italian’s tackle on Song was a disgrace and he should be punished by the Football Association but at least the eccentric striker was showing some commitment.

Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville claimed Balotelli should be told not to tackle – and maybe he’s right – but did Mancini instruct the rest of his team not to bother putting their bodies on the line as well?

The likes of Sergio Aguero and Samir Nasri were equally disgraceful and City fans should be asking questions about their commitment to the club.

Balotelli was at least tracking back, working for the team and wearing his heart on his sleeve.

Admittedly, he’s an attention seeker and the 21-year-old didn’t play well but most would prefer a player who works hard and cares instead of the others who are content to pick up their wages and went spectacularly went missing when Mancini needed them the most.

share the match

For more reaction and comment, visit – Football’s Social Network. Available now for FREE online or at the App Store.


MORE: The latest football transfer news

MORE: Meet the Premier League's most stylish footballers

MORE: Do you know the top Muslim footballers in the Premier League?

MORE: Man United latest news

MORE: Arsenal latest news

MORE: Chelsea latest news

MORE: Liverpool latest news

The Sport Review
Frank Lampard sends message to Chelsea FC fans about Eden Hazard
The Sport Review
Top 50 most stylish footballers in the world in 2017: Arsenal, Man United, Chelsea, Liverpool stars feature
The Sport Review
Top 40 Muslim footballers: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Man United stars feature
The Sport Review
Top 25 footballers’ cars: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Real Madrid players feature
The Sport Review
Top 20 Nigerian footballers in Premier League: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool stars feature
The Sport Review
Arsenal player wages 2017: Do you know how much Xhaka, Ozil and Coquelin earn each week?
The Sport Review
Ian Wright ‘disgusted’ with Man United’s performance at Sevilla
Dubai 2018
The Sport Review
Dubai 2018: Konta falls in Round 2, but top seeds Svitolina, Muguruza and Pliskova reach QFs
The Sport Review
Rio Ferdinand raves about Man United star’s ‘unreal’ display at Sevilla