Saturday March 4 2017
Mancini: 'I want to be Italy Coach'

Roberto Mancini admits he’d love to be Italy Coach, especially with the crop of talented young players, but Mario Balotelli “risks throwing away a career.”

The former Inter boss sat down with the Corriere dello Sport for a lengthy interview.

“Romantically, for many reasons, I would love to be the Coach of the Nazionale,” said Mancini.

“There are many talented young Italian players coming through and I think in a couple of years we could see a really good Azzurri side.

“Domenico Berardi is very strong, then there’s Federico Bernardeschi, Federico Chiesa, Gianluigi Donnarumma, Manuel Locatelli and Roberto Gagliardini of Inter.”

Balotelli should’ve been the star of the Italy squad, but is losing his way yet again in Nice.

“I know Mario well. I gave him his Serie A debut at Inter and took him with me to Manchester City. He’s a really good lad, he has a heart of gold, and had such quality when he made his debut.

“He did do well in Manchester, scoring goals and we won almost everything with him. I don’t know what happened and it’s really disappointing. He risks throwing away a career that could’ve been formidable.

“Mario is the same age as my eldest son, so I spoke to him many times. I hoped he could understand. Maybe he does understand, but he’s young and therefore makes mistakes anyway.

“Football is like life, because in this sport you have all the things that exist in everyday life. You need to be polite, because you are dealing with teammates and opponents. There are rules to be respected. You must be tenacious in moments of difficulty.

“Above all, you must have the creativity to express yourself. Anyone lucky enough to play football must do just one thing: enjoy it.”