Mario Balotelli issued a response on Instagram after Zlatan Ibrahimovic suggested that he never lived up to his potential.
The pair worked together at Inter Milan from 2007 to 2009 subsequently playing 29 times alongside each other while having two joint goal particpations.
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Ibrahimovic left for Barcelona with Samuel Eto’o going the other way. Balotelli’s time at Inter ended the following year when he joined Manchester City, and chaos would often follow him, much like the enigmatic Swede the Italian marksman has enjoyed a journeyman career.
Milan, Liverpool, Nice, Marseille, Brescia, Monza, Adana Demirspor and Sion have since been home to Balotelli and the 33-year-old is currently enjoying a second spell at Adana Demirspor where he calls Patrick Kluivert his manager.
Ibrahimovic, though, feels Balotelli never reached the heights many envisaged back during his formative years. “He had so many opportunities to exploit his talent and change his future. He never did, though, that’s the truth,” he told La Gazzetta dello Sport journalist Luigi Garlando in a recent Q&A session.
Not one to let this statement lie down Balotelli simply rebutted with an image posted on his Instagram stories of him carrying the Champions League trophy Inter won in May 2010.
Not one to let this statement lie down Balotelli simply rebutted with an image of him carrying the Champions League trophy Inter won in May 2010 and it will not be lost on many that success came in the Nerazzurri’s first post-Ibrahimovic season.
Inter famously overcame then-defending European champions Barça in a tempestuous semi-final. Ibrahimovic, who ended an incredible two-decade playing career earlier this year, never had the distinction of playing in a Champions League final let alone winning European football’s grand prize.
He’s not without esteemed company with former Ballon d’Or recipients Ronaldo and Pavel Nedved also missing that medal from their many accolades. Francesco Totti, Gianluigi Buffon, Dennis Bergkamp and Patrick Vieira are just a few other names.