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Balotelli To Change Attitude;Says Italy Coach Gian Piero Ventura

Mario Balotelli,Italian striker.photo/file
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Mario Balotelli,Italy and Nice striker.photo/file

Mario Balotelli has shown signs of venturing to return into the national team side according to Italy coach Gian Piero Ventura.

Balotelli last played for Italy at their ill-fated 2014 World Cup campaign, but his international and club careers have been hanging  since then.

However,after a firing start with French first division side Nice this season, the controversial striker appeared to have stopped the rot with goals and assists coming thick and fast.

It gave  Ventura a reason to offer him a way back last month but the coach pledges a face-to-face meeting with Mario to “discuss” behavioral problems but the prospect looks slim apparently.

The former Inter Milan, AC Milan, Manchester City and Liverpool striker was issued his third red card of the season last weekend in a 1-0 win at Lorient.

“We have to meet face to face but up until now I haven’t seen positive signs,” Ventura told the Italian media .

Meanwhile, the Italy career of former Southampton  striker Graziano Pelle who now plays at Chinese Super League side Shandong Luneng appears to be over.

Pelle played a key role for Italy on their way to the quarter-finals of Euro 2016 under former coach Antonio Conte and managed to score against Belgium then Spain, before missing a penalty in a quarter-final shoot-out defeat to Germany.

He was initially sidelined from the squad for refusing to shake Ventura’s hand after being substituted in a 2018 World Cup qualifying draw with Spain in Turin last October.

Italy sit second in their World Cup qualifying group on the same points as Spain and resume their bid for the 2018 competition against Albania in March.

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