What’s with all the fuss about Mario Balotelli’s wink? It’s Rio Ferdinand who should be facing F.A. disciplinary action

by Paul Connolly

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

Once more the tabloid hacks are weeing themselves trying to pin some awful deed upon Manchester City’s Mario Balotelli, after the fracas at the end of City’s surprisingly comfortable F.A. Cup semi-final win over Manchester United.

Once more they’re talking from their not inconsiderably-sized bottoms. Balotelli’s offence? To gently taunt United fans, from whom he’d been getting remorseless stick all afternoon, from the comfortable distance of near the halfway line. He didn’t run the length of the pitch a la Adebayor versus Arsenal or as Gary Neville did against both Liverpool and City (the second as a sub). He lifted his shirt at opposing fans from about 70 yards. Good grief, get a grip boys. If you can dish it out, you can certainly take the gentlest of taunting at the end of such a big game.

However, for the likes of Anderson, Nani and Rio Ferdinand it was as if Balotelli had fired a machine gun indiscriminately into the United end (he’d have been lucky to hit anyone given the speed with which the United fans had exited the ground). Ferdinand, in particular, acted disgracefully, charging around, big mouth flapping, trying (or at least pretending to try) to land one on a supremely unbothered Balotelli.

Then, horror of horrors, Balotelli winked at the blowhard Ferdinand, which led to another pretend charge from the United player. Of course, if the diminutive Shaun Wright-Phillips hadn’t intervened (SWP could probably sue Ferdinand for the cricked neck he suffered in the tangle), Ferdinand would definitely have lamped Balotelli. Oh yes.

Then, of course, Ferdinand started swearing at City coach David Platt, apparently telling Platt that he should be keeping Balotelli under control. That’s rich, Rio. Where was your manager during the game? In the stands after being banned from the touchline for calling a referee a cheat. And your star striker, Wayne Rooney, where was he? Oh, yes, banned for his foul-mouthed tirade into a TV camera at West Ham. And where was your central midfielder, Paul Scholes, at the final whistle? Taking an early shower after being shown a straight red for a disgraceful lunge on Pablo Zabaleta (Scholes had already somehow escaped without even a word from Mike Dean after a terrible tackle on Nigel de Jong in the fourth minute). Which team’s players and staff need controlling, Rio?

Or could it just be that you’re a very bad loser and that, as a former England captain, you provided a terrible role model for any kids watching by charging around at the final whistle trying to start a fight (or pretending to try to start a fight) and swearing at the opposing team’s staff because someone waved their shirt at some rapidly emptying seats from 70 yards and then winked at you.

It’s not Balotelli the F.A. should be looking at, it’s the pathetic Rio Ferdinand.

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  • Jay

    I’m amazed the bastion of forward thinking, righteous indignation and progressive writing – Paul Connolly, has not posted articles on these subjects.

    For shame.

  • dexylongshot

    Deffo right about the guidelines. There has to be something set up and obeyed by all players, refs, managers and stick to it, i’ll doubt it will done anytime soon though.

  • Mike

    Let’s all laugh at utd and utd fans!! Fuckin hell never seen so much bollox wrote by so few brain cells!! Jay and the script writer just chill out when you lose , get used to it !! Great page DEXY

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