The 22-year-old Balotelli is one of the more enigmatic characters in world football and has no doubt caused a lot of trouble and frustration for manager Roberto Mancini in his time at the club. And with a host of attacking options already existent at the Etihad, the reports started to emerge—logically—that Balotelli could be a transfer option for the Citizens.
But according to comments that Raiola made, the striker is not interested in leaving the Etihad Stadium this transfer window, preferring to try to play for his spot in the starting side at City—proving to Mancini and to others that he is indeed worth it.
He doesn't want to leave. There's no player who's ever happy not playing a game, but he accepts it. It's all part of the game.
Theres is no [transfer to] Italy and no plans to go there. He'll work until the end of his contract. [Sunday's omission against Tottenham Hotspur] doesn't mean that he wants to leave Manchester.
Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez are the two logical starting strikers at the club given their proven talent and skill for the defending league champions.
And with Edin Dzeko playing strongly off the bench this year—perhaps becoming the club's super-sub, if you like—you'd have to say that Balotelli has some serious work to do before he is considering a starting option in big games for City.
In the appearances that he has made for the club this year due to injury to Aguero, the Italian international has not looked dominant in attack—nor did he look engaged in defense to the point that it looked as if he were even trying to win the ball back.
He is yet to score a Premier League goal this year, averaging less than one tackle and one interception per game and is only completing around 13.3 passes per game—less than goalkeeper Joe Hart averages (per WhoScored).
Thus it seems natural for Mancini to opt for other attacking options this season, and if latest rumors are to be believed, he could well look for other attacking options over the winter transfer window to boost their squad for the Premier League season ahead.
If that happens, then surely Balotelli will be out of the club at some point in the near future—even if it's not this winter or even in the following summer window.
The 22-year-old simply doesn't appear to have a future at the club—not with all the attacking talent and skill that Mancini already has at his disposal.
He might not be leaving now, but it's hard not to see him leaving at some point in the future—whenever that might be.
Does Mario Balotelli have a future at Manchester City?
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