The Italy international was not included in the side that defeated Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 at the Etihad Stadium and Mancini has insisted that it was purely for football reasons.
"Mario didn't play because it was my choice," said Mancini. "I have 20 players and if there are some players that don't work well, they don't deserve to play. There were other players that worked better than Mario and they deserve to go on the bench."
Meanwhile, reports have emerged in the last few weeks claiming that Balotelli could be on his way out of the club in January.