Mario Balotelli insists he will remain at Manchester City despite transfer speculation

 

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The Independent Football

Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli has brushed aside ongoing rumours he will leave the Etihad Stadium this summer.

Recent reports in Italy claim Balotelli could be included in a swap deal that would see AC Milan defender Thiago Silva move to City.

"I play at Manchester City," Balotelli said today in Gazzetta dello Sport. "I am happy at City and I will remain there."

Balotelli joined City from Inter Milan in August 2010 and is under contract with the Blues outfit until June 2015.

The 21-year-old, a self-confessed AC Milan fan, insists there is no truth in reports linking him with a move to the San Siro outfit.

"I don't know anything," he said. "I haven't had any contact with them (AC Milan) in the past few years."

Balotelli would welcome the arrival of Brazil international Silva.

"If Thiago Silva was to arrive to City then for sure we would be stronger," he said.

Balotelli, who came off the bench in City's last-day win over QPR to set up Sergio Aguero's last-gasp winner to clinch the Premier League title, believes he has a lot of room for improvement.

"This year we were the strongest team and we deserved to win," he said ."As for my season, I give myself a pass mark.

"I am young and it is normal that I make mistakes.

"But with regards to the psychological aspect, I don't pay attention because I am fed up with what everyone says.

"I just have to improve tactically, mature and score always.

"In England they tend to exaggerate regarding what I do off the pitch.

"But those that love me know what I am really like.

"I'm just sorry for my mother because certain (media) stories might upset her."

Balotelli is currently training in Coverciano with Italy's national team in preparation for the European Championship.

He was included in Cesare Prandelli's preliminary squad despite reports earlier this year claiming Balotelli could be left out following his off-the-field antics throughout this season.

"I never thought I would lose my place in the national team," he said. "I have always been in contact with the national coach.

"This tournament could be the opportunity of my life.

"But I don't feel an added responsibility.

"Prandelli just like (City coach Roberto) Mancini has given me a lot of confidence and waited for me and I cannot wait to repay that trust.

"I don't think I will ever leave him down to 10 men.

"I want to be a winner and give the fans some joy.

"I am really enthusiastic, the European Championship is very important for me."

PA

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