Last Updated: Sat, 17 Nov 2012 13:22
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has warned controversial forward Mario Balotelli he must work harder to get into the first XI.
The 22-year-old was omitted from the squad for last weekend's 2-1 win over Tottenham and he has been told by the former Inter boss that he must give more in training to get back into the fold.
The 47-year-old is not lacking options in attack for the Citizens as Sergio Aguero, Carlos Tevez and super-sub Edin Dzeko have all been adding goals to the side.
Mancini has a special relationship with the young striker but speculation continues to grow as to where Balotelli's future lies.
"I told him this was the reason - because he didn't work well for three days," he said.
"I think Mario needs to work harder. If any player doesn't work hard it is difficult that he can play at this level.
"What you do in training you do in the game, and every player needs to work hard to improve his performance in the training sessions. After that he can play well in the game."
Have you an opinion on this story? Put your money where your mouth is and claim a free £25 bet.