Mario Balotelli of the ‘Why Always Me’ fame has told whoever cares to listen that old things have passed away and that he has become a new improved and matured fellow that can be relied upon. He made the submission after he was left out of the Azzuris friendly with the Three Lions of England that ended 1-1 at the Wimbley on Tuesday.
Balotelli has admitted he was surprised he did not get a call-up to the Italy squad and assured whoever will be taking over the job permanently that he’s ‘matured’.
The Nice striker was overlooked for Italy’s recent friendlies against Argentina and England over the international break with caretaker boss Luigi Di Biagio preferring the options of Ciro Immobile, Andrea Belotti and Patrick Cutrone.
Balotelli was left feeling slightly disgruntled after being left out of the squad, having felt he had done enough to earn a recall following an impressive season that has seen him hit the target 22 times in 31 matches.
‘If I’m honest: I expected to be back in Azzurro (Italian national team),’ he told Gazzetta dello Sport.
‘I’ve matured, I’m 27 and I have two children. The time for [messing around with] girls has long gone.’Italy, France or England? I’m someone who lives on edge.’
The 27-year-old’s omission from the latest Italy squad caused quite a stir with his agent Mino Raiola said to be livid about the decision.
He has not represented his country since the 2014 World Cup despite also enjoying a goal-glut season last term.
The Nice forward insisted he has ‘matured’ and is ready to return after the latest snub
Di Biagio has been made favourite to take the Italy job on a permanent basis and insisted the door is still open for Balotelli.
He recently said: ‘Numbers and goals are important for forwards but they have to be linked to a certain type of performance.
‘I have looked, judged and decided. I will continue to follow him and we will see what he does in the next few months.’
The former Manchester City and Liverpool attacker has scored 13 goals in 33 caps for his country.