El Shaarawy: Balotelli's temper is hindering AC Milan

The Italian admits that his side are often made to suffer from his compatriot's outbursts but feels that they can surpass last season's third-placed finish despite their poor start
Stephan El Shaarawy has urged Mario Balotelli to curb his temper or risk damaging AC Milan's chances this season.

The striker was issued a three-match ban after he angrily confronted officials following the Rossoneri's 2-1 defeat to Napoli, forcing him to sit out Tuesday's 3-3 draw with Bologna as well as forthcoming games against Sampdoria and Juventus.

El Shaarawy has revealed his compatriot apologised to team-mates immediately after his outburst but has urged the former Manchester City man to control his actions better in future or risk derailing Milan's season.

9/4 Milan are 9/4 with Bet365 to finish in the top three of Serie A
"He knows it was wrong and he apologised to us after the game. He made a mistake. It's an aspect of his character he knows he must improve because it penalises us," the forward told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

Milan struck twice in the dying minutes to take a share of the spoils from their trip to Bologna but already find themselves 10 points adrift of Serie A leaders Roma having accrued just five points from five games.

El Shaarawy insists that he is not concerned by his side's inauspicious start to the 2013-14 campaign and maintains that their target is to improve on last season's third-placed finish.

"Last season we reached third place, which was a great achievement. The goal is to do better than a year ago, that's obvious," he continued. "I'll be honest: this false start doesn't scare me.

"I'm satisfied with what I've produced so far. I've scored, I've set up others. Personally, I can't complain. I feel an integral part of this project."