Inter Milan v Barcelona - UEFA Champions League

April 20th, 2010

Mario Balotelli is enjoying an excellent run of form for both club and country. During a press conference ahead of Italy’s World Cup qualifier with Malta, Balotelli covered a myriad of topics, including racism, his perceived arrogance and the past.

There was the standard Super Mario fare: “I’ve never had a big head. I do not consider myself to be the best in the world, nor the worst. I am me and that is enough.”

More interestingly, was when he was asked about his biggest regret.

Via Football Italia:

“In my life I would only avoid doing one thing again: I wouldn’t have thrown the Inter jersey to the ground.”

In April of 2010, during the first leg of Inter’s Champions League semifinal against Barcelona, a then 19-year-old Balotelli replaced Diego Milito in the 75th minute and was jeered heavily by the home fans at the San Siro. Balotelli had been left out of five games earlier in the season because of a spat with Manager Jose Mourinho.

After the game–Inter won 3-1–Balotelli threw his jersey to the ground and stormed off the pitch. His teammates were incensed. Reports indicated Marco Materazzi pinned him against a wall in the locker room. Midfielder Dejan Stankovic likened him to one of his three kids.

“He’s suffered, but I’ve suffered too with the fans,” Stankovic added. “He’s reacted poorly, but he’s still got time and I’m confident in him.”

Prophetic words. Everybody has to grow up at some point. It appears Super Mario is on his way.