Italy captain Giorgio Chiellini has slammed his national teammate Mario Balotelli for his attitude during the 2013 Confederations Cup. Juventus star Chiellini will release his autobiography in the next few days and in it, he has labelled Brescia striker Mario Balotelli a 'negative person'. Although Balotelli is no stranger to controversy, eight-time Serie A champion Chiellini hammered the 'selfish' Italy forward stating that he has no respect for the hot-headed Balotelli.
In his autobiography titled lo Giorgio, Chiellini didn't hold back his remarks on national teammate Mario Balotelli. The 35-year-old Juventus stalwart recalled an incident with Balotelli in the 2013 Confederations Cup. Italy had lost their group stage encounter against Brazil 4-2 and in his own words, Chiellini wrote why Balotelli deserved a slap after the game, “In 2013, in the Confederations Cup against Brazil, Balotelli didn't help us at all. He deserved a slap". Italy ended up finishing third in the tournament and the Juventus centre-back was left furious with Balotelli.
La Reppublica confirmed that Chiellini had labelled Balotelli a 'negative person' who is extremely self-centred. Chiellini also wrote he has 'no respect' for Champions League winner Balotelli after that incident and further called out his ability as a striker. Chiellini has established himself as a Juventus legend but his criticism for his Italy teammate Balotelli continued as he noted the former Manchester City star wouldn't make it on his list of top 20 strikers.
Giorgio Chiellini on Mario Balotelli:— D O F (At 🏠) (@theDOFootball) May 9, 2020
🗣: “Balotelli is a negative person with no respect for the team.
“Someone thinks he is among the top five players in the world, I never even thought that he could be in the top ten or twenty.”
Balotelli has not played for Italy since September 2018 and has just three caps in the past five years. The 29-year-old was subject to racist insults from the crowd during Brescia's encounter against Hellas Verona earlier last year. Infuriated, Balotelli kicked the ball towards the opposition fans and threatened to walk off the pitch. Italy national team coach Roberto Mancini recently admitted to Calciomercato that he will consider Balotelli an option for Italy based 'purely on his football not to make a statement against racism'.