Poli hails Balotelli composure following last-gasp penalty

The former Sampdoria midfielder was thrilled to see his team-mate recover his nerves of steel from the spot in the final moments of the Champions League clash with Ajax

AC Milan midfielder Andrea Poli has praised Mario Balotelli’s calmness from the spot after the attacker converted a controversial stoppage-time penalty in Tuesday’s Champions League draw against Ajax.

The 23-year-old missed his first-ever penalty in senior football in the 2-1 loss against Napoli last month, but he swept home from 12 yards in the dying moments at the Amsterdam ArenA to salvage a point for the Rossoneri.

And Poli was thrilled to see his team-mate keep his cool from the spot, telling the club’s official website: “I don’t think Balotelli was nervous. He took the penalty well.

“In the first half Mario found the going a bit hard like we all did.”

The midfielder was pleased with the way his side rallied in the second half to up their game and secure a 1-1 draw in Amsterdam after going behind to Stefano Denswil’s late goal.

“It was a tough first half but we did well in the second half. We attacked them harder in the second half and things went better. We came close to scoring a few times.”

Milan sit second in Group H with four points from two games, with Ajax occupying third place with one point.

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