Balotelli has demons, he just wants to be a celebrity – Di Canio

The former Lazio star believes the 24-year-old striker will waste his natural talent unless he completely changes his attitude soon

Mario Balotelli has “demons in his brain” and is more interested in being a celebrity than a football player, according to Paolo Di Canio.

The striker’s career has been shrowded in controversy from the very beginning, having burned bridges at Inter with Jose Mourinho and Manchester City under Roberto Mancini.

Now he is facing an uncertain future having failed to make an impact at Liverpool last season following a £16 million (€20m) move from AC Milan.

And Di Canio believes the 24-year-old must make some drastic changes to his attitude or else he will waste his natural talents.

“Talking as a manager, my view on football is you need to understand what it means to play with and for your team-mates,” the Italian told TalkSport.

“You need to show empathy in good moments and bad moments. It doesn’t look like he is doing this.

“Many managers have tried to change him. Mancini was his father in football but even he now doesn’t want him back at Inter.

“Mourinho understood at the beginning. He is a very good reader of players and he saw that you can’t change this guy. Now he is nearly 25, he needs to change himself. He can’t rely on other people to help him.

“The demons are in his brain. He is still young, physically he is strong, he is an incredible natural athlete, but he has never used his big potential.

“Sometimes he thinks football is I can keep the ball, show off in some way, and then my team-mates have to run for me. No. Football is sacrifice. Football is to bond with your team-mates. Not off the field in a bar because you are generous. It is being generous on the pitch.

“He has big potential and I hope in my heart for him that he can turn it around, but I presume it will be very difficult because he spends too much time on social network and it seems he uses football to be a celebrity – not the opposite.”

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