Last Updated: Sun, 18 Nov 2012 12:13
Roberto Mancini says Mario Balotelli missed Manchester City's 5-0 win against Aston Villa with a back injury.
Balotelli was not included in the matchday squad, fuelling rumours of further unrest behind the scenes, but Mancini says a back injury picked up in training was the problem.
"Yesterday in the training session he had a problem in his back and said he couldn't play," Mancini revealed.
City did not miss him though as Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez grabbed a brace apiece, while David Silva got the other in a performance that delighted Mancini.
"I am very satisfied with this performance," he added. "In the first half we played well created a lot of chances but we were too soft when we had chances to score.
"But we played well and this is the most important thing. In the last two games I think we changed something. In our mind we found a good spirit, like last year.
"For us it is very important we start to play well and in the last two games we have scored six goals with our strikers. I think we have been missing their goals."
Have you an opinion on this story? Put your money where your mouth is and claim a free £25 bet.