Cesare Prandelli: 'Mario Balotelli starting to mature'

Mario Balotelli
© PA Photos
Italy manager Cesare Prandelli rejects the notion that selecting Mario Balotelli is a gamble.

Italy manager Cesare Prandelli believes that striker Mario Balotelli is showing signs of developing into a mature international footballer.

The Azzurri boss praised the Manchester City forward following his strike against Denmark in last night's 3-1 win and rejected the notion that selecting him was a gamble.

"He has understood what he has to do for Italy," he said. "I say that from now on the Balotelli in an Azzurri jersey has to be the one we saw at San Siro against the Danes.

"When I talk about Balotelli, I do not like the suggestion he is a gamble, but the moment has certainly come for him to take his share of responsibility in an Italy shirt.

"I want a national team that is always targeting improvement, even if I'd like to have more time to try out some young players."

Italy moved to the top of World Cup qualifying Group B after seeing off Morten Olsen's side.

Cesare Prandelli
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