Thursday, 3 January 2013

Opinionated Article: Mario vs Roberto

Blown out of proportion but raises questions...

By Archie Barnett

Just before we start, this article will be opinionated and will look at different sides of the argument, some of you may not agree with what is written and may want to complain about it, but hey-ho that's journalism. Any complaints you may have, just pass them on to me via twitter.

There are many issues that can be raised after the news that striker Mario Balotelli and manager Roberto Mancini have been involved in the training ground bust up, but what exactly are they?

All issues hold high significance, whether it be today with the fiery Italians, or the involvement of the press. The first issue to be discussed is the ever-present problem of Mario Balotelli.

Through thick and thin, rightly or wrongly, Roberto Mancini has stuck up for and criticised Mario on a variety of occasions but is there any way he can stick up for him this time? In my opinion, both Roberto and Mario have serious questions to answer, however I'll get round to that later.

On many occasions the fans of Manchester City have called for Mario Balotelli to leave the club claiming that a certain activity is the final straw. We saw it last season after his red card away at Arsenal leaving many fans believing that the title was over. Is this actually the last straw though now, will Mario's name ever be sung around the Etihad again?

Former Manchester City player Kevin Horlock (@KevinHorlock6) 
 "Enough is enough Balotelli has got to go, there is a line you don't cross and he has gone way beyond it" ... "There is times when Managers infuriate you but they are the Boss you can't square up to them no matter what...unless you want to leave...".

I think the more and more you look into this situation, the more you get out of it. It seems that the altercation started after a tackle from Balotelli on Sinclair, prompting a reaction from Mancini to which Balotelli gestured, resulting in the "tussle".

I don't necessarily blame Mario as much looking into the situation more, granted I don't condomn is behaviour and I feel enough is enough, but there is much more in this than meets the eye. At the first glance, you see the headline "Balotelli and Mancini in training ground bust-up" and straight away lean towards Mancini's side - rightly or wrongly.

If you have taken the "all Balotelli's fault" approach, then I suggest you look into this more. Okay, so it may appear as if I am sticking up for Mario, however it's quite the opposite - I am in fact being realistic in the situation, looking at both sides, as I don't feel that this is purely down to Mario.

There is no doubt that Mancini has finally lost patience with the striker - who he has acted as a father figure towards - but even if you do lose patience, as a Premier League manager it is completely unacceptable to engage in a "tussle" with one of your players.

I often post tweets that prompt a reaction, and earlier I tweeted "Not defending anything, but possibility also that this has been completely over exaggerated? This stuff happens in a playground at school" prompting a reply from one of my followers that read "not between the teacher and the pupil though. Bobby the teacher, Mario the pupil?"

This, I completely agree with. Mancini in this case is the teacher, and Mario is the pupil. In any other profession, if this were to happen the teacher would be investigated heavily and promptly disciplined, and I feel this will be the outcome in this situation.

I'm certainly not one of the "Bobby out" crew that come out all over Twitter once we lose a game, and I am definitely grateful for the things he has done at the club, but in my honest opinion, I don't think he'll be here come next season.

There is no doubt that he has had a tough time at Manchester City regarding situations he's had to deal with during his time as boss, but has he handled them sufficiently?

His man-management skills have come into question on various occasions, this being another. He knew Mario Balotelli's personality, and felt that he could overcome the problems that Mario would face in his career due to that mischievous personality, a problem that maybe Roberto couldn't handle?

Another argument that has to be brought into question yet again is how easy it is for the media to access Carrington to get these kind of stories. There is no doubt in my mind that bust-ups happen throughout the country and many other clubs, however due to Manchester City being a top flight club fighting for championships, the media tend to cast their attention over to us.

This issue is one that unfortunately is fairly unlikely to be resolved until we move to the new training complex that is currently in construction, but why? The Carrington training complex is owned by the council, and is therefore public ground. This allows journalists to photograph what goes on during City's training sessions, the only way to stop this would be putting up higher fences, a proposal turned down by the council.

However, I still feel that this whole situation has been blown out of proportion by the media, but it still raises some serious issues that need addressing.

So there you have it, my view on the situation.  Like I say, if you disagree with me then fine, it's your opinion. This is my opinion, so please don't go about slaughtering me for it. I'm always open for debate if you feel differently, but this article is a matter of opinion.

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You can also follow Archie on Twitter: @ArchieMCFC

(c) The Sky Blue View 2013

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