Balotelli Has “Demons In His Brain” Says Paolo Di Canio
Liverpool outcast Mario Balotelli. Image: Google
Former Italy international and West ham legend Paolo Di Canio has lashed out at Liverpool flop Mario Balotelli, claiming he has “demons in his brain” and is more interested in being a celebrity than a footballer.
Balotelli has failed spectacularly to live up to his early promise, with coaches Jose Mourinho and Roberto Mancini dismissing the controversial Italian as hopeless during his stints at Inter Milan and Manchester city respectively.
And Di Canio believes the 24-year-old must make some drastic changes to his attitude or else he will waste his natural talents.
“Talking as a manager, my view on football is you need to understand what it means to play with and for your team-mates,” the Italian told TalkSport.
“Many managers have tried to change him. Mancini was his father in football but even he now doesn’t want him back at Inter.
“Mourinho understood at the beginning. He is a very good reader of players and he saw that you can’t change this guy.”
“The demons are in his brain. He is still young, physically he is strong, he is an incredible natural athlete, but he has never used his big potential.
“Sometimes he thinks football is I can keep the ball, show off in some way, and then my team-mates have to run for me. No. Football is sacrifice. Football is to bond with your team-mates. Not off the field in a bar because you are generous. It is being generous on the pitch.
“He has big potential and I hope in my heart for him that he can turn it around, but I presume it will be very difficult because he spends too much time on social network and it seems he uses football to be a celebrity — not the opposite.”
The 24-year-old is currently in limbo, having been dropped by Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers and ignored by Azzurri coach Antonio Conte.