- Mario Balotelli hit out at Roberto Mancini after the Italy boss claimed the national side was devoid of strikers
- Mancini bemoaned the apparent lack of attacking options after Italy succumbed to a 2-1 defeat to England recently
- The coach courted controversy after calling up Argentine-born Mateo Retegui who scored on his debut against the Three Lions in Naples
There is certainly no love lost between Mario Balotelli and Roberto Mancini as the former Manchester City striker openly disputed the coach’s recent claims about Italy’s attacking options.
Balotelli, 32, took to Instagram to make clear his feelings after Mancini appeared to bemoan the apparent lack of strikers in the Italy team.
In the wake of Italy’s 2-1 defeat to England in the UEFA European Championship , Mancini said his side was struggling in the attacking department.
"I have no idea why so few forwards come out. we are really very limited in the offensive department.” He said as quoted on SportBible.
Ronaldo claims Saudi League could rub shoulders with Premier League, La Liga in the next five years
Exciting feature: Check out news exactly for YOU ➡️ click on "Recommended for you" and enjoy!
"We have three teams in the quarter-finals of the Champions League, but out of three teams, there are seven or eight Italians at the most. This is the reality."
But Balotelli does not buy Mancini’s excuse at all, and he took to his Instagram story to say:
"There are strikers in Italy and they are fit, trust me."
"Regret is the feeling of those who regularly don't learn the lesson and get there once it's all finished. Or simply, they never get there.!"
Over the course of his career, Balotelli has represented the Italy national team 36 times, and famously scored twice against Germany in 2012 in the semi-final of the European Championships, as per Transfermkt.
However, he has not had a call-up to the national side since 2018 as his struggles in club football have seen him lose his ratings.
Currently, Balotelli plays for FC Sion in the Swiss Super League, and has made 17 appearances across all competitions for the side so far this campaign.