Balotelli always carries a gun...his 'mafia warning' tattoo
Published 23:00 05/03/11 By Simon Mullock
Mario Balotelli carries a gun with him everywhere he goes.
But before Premier League defenders start to worry that the Manchester City striker is armed and dangerous, Sunday Mirror Sport can reveal that Balotelli’s weapon of choice is a tattoo that he describes as a “mafia warning”.
The 20-year-old Italian arrived at Eastlands in a £24million deal from Inter Milan in the summer with a reputation as being mad, bad and dangerous to know – and his choice of body art only adds to his mystique.
But in a revealing interview with the club’s official magazine, ManC, it is clear that Balotelli is a man of contradictions.
Like how his love of animals saw him make a visit to the local dogs’ home when he first arrived in England.
Describing his tattoos, Balotelli says: “One is the happy mask and on my other arm is the angry mask.
“There is a lion – because I have the same spirit as a lion And I have another that is friendship and family – five characters that represent my mum, dad, sister, brother and brother.
“[The gun] is a mafia warning. It means if anyone touches or harms my family, they will pay for it.”
Family is important to Balotelli. He was fostered from the age of three by Francesco and Silvia Balotelli and he has admitted that being away from them was the source of the homesickness he suffered when he first moved to Manchester. Balotelli also has a deep love of animals and has been a regular visitor to Knowsley Safari Park.
He also owns a dog called Lucky, but is unable to bring him to England at the moment because of quarantine laws.
Cue his unexpected trip to Manchester Dogs’ Home in east Manchester.
“Yeah, I’ve been,” says Balotelli. “Only once, but I couldn’t take one home. I love Lucky too much and it wouldn’t be fair if and when he finally comes over.
“Lucky is like a black Labrador and he’s still in Italy. It takes six months to bring a dog into England from abroad so I plan to bring him back with me for the start of next season.”
The full Mario Balotelli interview can be read in Manchester City’s official magazine ‘ManC’, which is out tomorrow.