Man up, Mario! Now show some respect, Mancini tells Balotelli after convincing star to pay Man City fine
12:03 GMT, 21 December 2012
Roberto Mancini has told Mario Balotelli that he needed to show respect for himself and his responsibilities by accepting a 340,000 punishment from the club.
Earlier this week Balotelli dropped his fight against the fine for breaches of discipline, deciding not to take City to a Premier League tribunal ‘as a sign of respect for Roberto Mancini, the supporters and the club’, according to a club statement.
But Mancini believes that above all the controversial striker owed it to himself to admit he was wrong after Balotelli was banned for a fifth of City’s games last season.
Time to move on: Roberto Mancini told Mario Balotelli show respect
Time to move on: Balotelli accepted the club's fine
'It’s normal that when someone makes a mistake he should take his responsibilities and Mario did this,’ said Mancini. ‘He respected himself, not me because it’s important for him to respect himself, very important.’
Balotelii was seen driving away from City’s training ground this morning after it was confirmed he is still too ill to play in tomorrow’s game at home to Reading.
Mancini insists the 22-year-old could still have a future at City despite speculation the Premier League champions will cut their losses and offload him in next month’s transfer window.
Christmas cheer: Roberto Mancini toast the press with a glass of Champagne during his press conference
‘Like other players, if he deserves to have other chances he will have them,’ added Mancini. ‘If a player works well he deserves to have the chance to play.
'This weekend Mario unfortunately is ill. He came this morning but he can’t do anything.’
Balotelli will miss Saturday's game with Reading with a virus but there was good news for Mancini as captain and defender Vincent Kompany is hoping to prove his fitness after a groin injury and James Milner is also in contention.
Welcome return: Vincent Kompany is close to a comeback
Back in business: James Milner is in contention to play against Reading
As Mancini celebrates his third anniversary in charge today, the Italian admitted that he thought it would take longer to challenge Manchester United’s domination of English football following last season’s dramatic title race.
He said: ‘When I arrived here three years ago I didn’t think that maybe in two years we would win the Premier League and FA Cup. I thought that it would take maybe four or five years to win the Premier League because it isn’t easy.
'We changed things in England, and Manchester in particular, because for 20 or 30 years United won everything. We changed this because we did well. We’ve also made mistakes, which is normal, and we need to continue to work hard to improve our game.’