Others about Super Mario

Massimo Moratti: “I’m happy for him. I think he’s finally found a home, Italy; all the Italians now love him as he wished. Balotelli is a complex guy, but above all a great talent and the European Championships have proved this in international terms, in front of the whole world. The nice thing is that he has learned to suffer; Prandelli chose not to play him against Republic of Ireland, but he did not give up. I have thought of trying to bring him to Inter; I would gladly bet on him here but Manchester City have every right to say no and want to hang onto him.”

Platini: “I saw him play live for the first time (against Germany) and he is a very strong player. He is able to play well with his back to the goal, as he showed in the first matches of the tournament. Then, against Ireland, he came in and scored, and he scored again against Germany.”

Prandelli: “We have always felt he had great ability. But there comes a time when you have to be brave enough to accept other people’s advice because the result becomes paramount. He has found a set-up where he can talk to great champions, who have won a lot of trophies and achieved a lot. We have asked him to do certain things, and at this moment in time, he is doing them.”

Del Bosque: “Balotelli is a peculiar type, very peculiar,” the 61-year-old revealed to Gazzetta dello Sport. I do not know him personally but he is a very complete footballer; fast, technically good, he knows how to dribble and is good in the air.”

Roberto Mancini: “I’m really happy for him. An adjective? Extraordinary. It’s the moment that he can pass from being a good player to a great player. And against Spain in the final, I expect that he will carry the team. The moment of his consecration has arrived. I was sure that Mario would score two goals; I felt it. I thought it was his night and that he would make a difference. What did I think after the second goal? That he would have been able to score another. But it was a shame that he took off his shirt. He should not have gotten himself booked.”

Balotelli: It’ll be interesting

“If we win and I score, it will be amazing. If I don’t score and we win it will still be amazing. I am really happy at the moment and after the match I hope I will be even happier.”

“We are in the final. We are one of the two best teams in the tournament. We have to go there and play to win.”

“We won the league at Manchester City so having a good season for me doesn’t depend on winning the Euros. If we don’t win it, it wouldn’t spoil the other things but it would be special.”

Redknapp: I tried to sign Balotelli

“You never know what you’re going to get with Mario Balotelli but one thing is certain – he is a major talent. He stunned Germany in the Euro 2012 semi-final and his second goal was fantastic. I actually tried to sign him for Tottenham before he went to Manchester City.”

“I’d admired him for a while and I went over to Italy to watch him play. I was impressed and I met up with him too. We wanted him on a loan deal but his club weren’t keen and it never happened. Shame because he’s definitely got it and, at only 21-years-old, he’ll be terrorising defenders for many seasons to come.”