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Mario Balotelli recalled to Italy squad

Balotelli recalled to Italy squad
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Nice striker Mario Balotelli is recalled to the Italy squad by new Azzurri head coach and former Manchester City and Inter Milan colleague Roberto Mancini.

Nice striker Mario Balotelli has been recalled to the Italy squad by new head coach Roberto Mancini.

The 27-year-old forward has scored 13 goals in 33 Azzurri appearances but has not made the national squad since their first-round elimination from the 2014 World Cup.

Balotelli, who previously played for Premier League giants Manchester City and Liverpool, was last called up by then-coach Antonio Conte in November 2014 but did not play because of injury.

Italy are currently in the process of rebuilding after failing to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, with Mancini taking over from Gian Piero Ventura.

Mancini coached Balotelli at Inter and Man City, and will take charge of his first game against Saudi Arabia in St Gallen in Switzerland on May 28.

The Italians will play further friendlies against France in Nice on June 1 and the Netherlands, who also failed to reach the World Cup, three days later in Turin.

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A chilled-out Roberto Mancini has a chinwag on the old rag and bone during the Serie A game between Lazio and Sampdoria on May 7, 2017
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