By Mark Sharkey: So, Mario Balotelli has finally decided he’s had enough of playing (or not playing) his football in the Premier League & is packing his bags to set off & continue his career at AC Milan.
The brilliant but all too often temperamental 22-year old has only shown glimpses of his undoubted ability & has often been in the media for the wrong reasons rather than his football, but his performances for Italy, especially in the semi final victory over Germany, showed he world what a fantastic footballer he can be.
With Manchester City’s strength in the forward department as it is Balotelli has struggled to nail down a regular first team place. With Sergio Aguero, Carlos Tevez & Edin Dzeko, Balotelli was never going to be the “main man” as his ego would seem to dictate he needs to be.
Whilst I’m not the biggest fan of his antics, his red card against Arsenal that (almost) cost City the title was as unprofessional an act as you could have imagined at the time, it is a shame that the Premier League is losing a player that has never been anything other than utterly entertaining.
For whatever reason these temperamental geniuses feel the need to leave the Premier League, much to its detriment. Cristiano Ronaldo felt he was not protected enough & had a reputation for falling over easily. Joey Barton has never helped himself on the pitch but one has to wonder why his attitude has never been an issue since he joined Marseille (where he is gaining a reputation as a cult hero!). Could it be his reputation is not as widely known over there?
Balotelli appears to be the latest to decide he has had enough & in my opinion, the Premier League is losing another star. English league football has always been better for the characters it has had. Gazza, Razor Ruddock, Di Canio, Ian Wright. These players were always worth watching & Balotelli slots in amongst them as must see viewing.
With Luis Suarez also attracting negative reaction for everything he does maybe we need to be careful what we wish for. I personally do not want a game full of emotionless drones & every good story needs to have a villain.
Perhaps it is just the balance we need to find between a pantomime villain we love to hate & an all-out witch-hunt!