MX23RW : Thursday, September 20 03:24:02

Mario Balotelli: 'I have nothing against Rio Ferdinand'

Balotelli: 'I have nothing against Rio'
© PA Photos
Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli says that he has nothing against Rio Ferdinand ahead of Sunday's Manchester derby.

Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli has played down any rift between himself and Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand ahead of Sunday's Manchester derby.

The pair collided after last season's FA Cup semi-final at Wembley when Ferdinand took exception to the Italian's celebrations after City's 1-0 win.

"I don't have anything against him," he said. "He is a great player. I didn't ever speak to him [at Wembley]. I was just celebrating, but not against them [United supporters]. I showed him the shirt of City and obviously he got angry with me.

"For me, what happened on the pitch stayed on the pitch and now we are friends like before. Or we respect each other anyway. I'm going to give him the handshake before the game like I give to everyone."

Meanwhile, it has been revealed that Ferdinand will fly to Wembley after the match at Old Trafford to perform the coin toss in the NFL match between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Chicago Bears.

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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Chelsea55001441015
2Liverpool5500112915
3Manchester CityMan City54101431113
4Watford5401105512
5Bournemouth5311107310
6Tottenham HotspurSpurs530210649
7Arsenal530210919
8Manchester UnitedMan Utd53028809
9Wolverhampton WanderersWolves52215508
10Everton513189-16
11Leicester CityLeicester520389-16
12Crystal Palace520346-26
13Southampton51226605
14Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton512279-25
15Fulham5113712-54
16West Ham UnitedWest Ham5104511-63
17Cardiff CityCardiff502339-62
18Huddersfield TownHuddersfield5023211-92
19Newcastle UnitedNewcastle501448-41
20Burnley5014310-71

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