The Italian striker is still goalless this season after nine appearances with Nice in Ligue 1 and is as far away from his top level as never before.

What is most surprising is the fact that last season Balotelli had one of his best seasons throughout his career netting 26 goals and earning a deserved call to the Italian national team by Roberto Mancini.

The 28-year old maybe started to contribute to his latest downfall last summer when he had clashed with Nice manager Patrick Vieira after arriving at preseason training 2 weeks late. This was because of a failed transfer to Marseille.

Patrick Vieira and Mario Balotelli. (Reuters)

Right now, Balotelli is in a moment of frustration and surely he is not one to keep his emotions a secret. In fact, during his last appearance in the league, the former Inter striker was involved in a verbal clash with the Nice manager after being substituted.

For sure, the French club is aware of what Balotelli is capable of but are not happy with the strikerโ€™s current performances and announced on Thursday that once his contract expires next summer, they will not fight to keep him at the club.

The club president Jean-Pierre Rivere seems to be resigned to the fact that the number 9 will not sign a new contract and leave Nice in the summer.

“No, I think it’ll be over.

“For us, Mario was leaving in the summer, so he missed the preseason. I think any player who doesn’t have a good preseason suffers during the first part of the season.

“Also, just when he is getting back into shape, he’s not getting the rub of the green. That makes the poor guy tense.

“Mario hasn’t lost his talent. The day when one will go in, they’re going to come thick and fast after that. You can’t have any regrets.” concluded Rivere.

From his end, Balotelli denied rumours of him returning to AC Milan in January and accused the Rossoneri fans of being disrespectful towards him after feeling he would not be welcome if an eventual move to Milan had to go down.

Balotelli played for AC Milan between 2013 and 2014 as well as between 2015-2016. (Source – Sky Sports)

โ€œItโ€™s still nice to hear from so many Milan fans who wouldnโ€™t like my eventual and rather unlikely return,โ€ he wrote in an Instagram story.

โ€œBut thatโ€™s okay. One day youโ€™re needed and the other youโ€™re not. The important thing is not to have any regrets.

โ€œI donโ€™t have any plans to move right now. I only wrote this to point out the non-recognition and non-respect of a fan base who will always be in my heart.โ€ said the Italian centre-forward.

For now, Balotelli should be staying at Nice until the end of the season but needs to improve his form if he wants to attract interest from other prominent clubs.



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