Friday September 27 2013
Balotelli wanted Tevez at Milan

Mario Balotelli has revealed he was hoping former Manchester City teammate Carlos Tevez would join him at Milan.

The Argentine was made available for transfer in the summer, but the previously interested Diavolo could do nothing as he joined Scudetto rivals Juventus instead.

“Carlitos is a great player,” Balotelli told the Gazzetta dello Sport on Friday in a lengthy interview covering a number of subjects.

“I got on well with him at Manchester City. I phoned him on a number of occasions in an effort to convince him to join us, but he then chose Juventus instead. That’s a shame.”

After again apologising for his dismissal at the end of the defeat to Napoli on Sunday, Balotelli admits he finds the treatment he receives from opposition defenders hard to take.

“Getting knocks is a part of football, I know that, but I don't want to have to end my career at the age of 28…

“I can assure you that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo get angry when they are fouled too.

“I know that I have to become stronger and cooler. I know that I have to comport myself better in certain situations if I want to get to the top.”

Before being red carded against the Azzurri, Balotelli missed his first professional penalty in the 2-1 defeat.

“It was going to happen sooner or later,” he explained. “Pepe Reina did well. I looked into his eyes, but I then looked down and it ended badly.

“Napoli? They have Gonzalo Higuain, Marek Hamsik, Juan Zuniga, they have great players but they didn’t impress me as a team.”

While Napoli are just two points shy of top spot, the Diavolo have collected just five points from five games.

“We just have to move up in gear,” the forward added. “The problem right now is not scoring goals, it’s that we are conceding too many.

“But we are not inferior to anyone. And Serie A is very balanced this season, it isn’t like when Inter were the best team with Roberto Mancini and Jose Mourinho.”

Balotelli also commented on the Italian national side and a possible strike partnership with Fiorentina’s Giuseppe Rossi.

“The Azzurri are my pride and joy. It’s everyone’s dream to play for your country. I owe Italy boss Cesare Prandelli a lot as he has always believed in me.

“Rossi? He’s a really good player who I have unfortunately never been able to play alongside. I hope that moments arrives.”