EXCLUSIVE: Fabrizio Ravanelli Believes Mario Balotelli Can Adapt To England But Warns About Privacy Issues

The 'Silver Fox' offers his expertise regarding whether 'Super Mario' can thrive in the Premier League...
With Inter striker Mario Balotelli potentially on his way to Manchester City in a high-priced deal, Fabrizio Ravanelli has offered Goal.com his expertise on moving from Italy to England. The former Juventus striker left for Middlesbrough in 1996 and was one of the first Italian success stories of the English Premier League.

How do you think Balotelli will find England from a technical point of view?

"He will certainly do well, because he has talent and extraordinary quality. It depends where he settles, he knows how to adapt in all circumstances."

And from a behavioural standpoint? If there are any tantrums will they be willing to forgive him?

"He will certainly mature. In England, although there are fewer sports programs, there is more attention placed on gossip, so it will be important he guards his private life. Fans will be ready to support him, because their primary concern is to determine a player's attachment to his shirt and Mario has already shown he is a determined guy."

On the other hand, have Inter done well to sell him?

"No, because he is a talented Italian. It's too bad we've lost another important [young] player. We'll now see him only on television."

Could they do more to keep him?

"Even taking into account the behavioural problems, the fault is with the broken bonds between family and friends. I believe the whole affair has followed the club's plans and [coach] Rafa Benitez's. Rafa clearly endorsed the transfer, otherwise he would have done more to keep him.

In the past, the club should have defended Balotelli more. Sometimes [former Inter coach Jose] Mourinho had heavy criticism against him."

Is Manchester City ideal? Or perhaps Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United would be better?

"I believe so. At City there is a coach who knows him perfectly and is qualified to treat him in the best way, though in this world nothing is for certain. Ferguson also would have been good in this sense, but can be very severe. With his players he has a frank and sincere relationship. In any case, Balotelli and [Roberto] Mancini have met and have a unified purpose."

In closing, is it possible his appointment as a "saviour" of his country will create some discomfort or exalt him?

"Being in a quiet environment, characterised by lower pressure, he may feel more comfortable. His management off the field will still be fundamental, meaning it's important he is always accompanied by a person that has his confidence."

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