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The controversial forward has been backed by his national team coach as he continues to struggle to build on his performances at Euro 2012.

Italy boss Cesare Prandelli insists he still believes Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli will fulfill his potential and become one of the best players in the world.

The 22-year-old impressed at Euro 2012 as he helped the Azzurri to the final of the competition, but he has struggled to find his best form this season. Nevertheless, Prandelli continues to have faith in Balotelli, and hopes the controversial forward will invest in himself and let his play do the talking from now on.

"I have given Mario some personal advice that will stay between the two of us," Prandelli told La Gazzetta dello Sport. "His football situation is quite clear. We still remember his goal against Germany in June, but it's almost February now. Who remembers a good recent game from him?

"I still believe in him, though. He has never disappointed with the national team. I hope that he decides to invest in himself and attempts to become one of the best in the world. He should let his football do the talking."

Balotelli has netted only one goal in just 14 Premier League appearances this season.

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