Mario Balotelli Barwuah is an Italian professional footballer who plays as a striker for Serie B club Brescia and the Italy national team.
Mario Balotelli Barwuah was born on August 12th of 1990 in Palermo, Italy. Although he was born to Ghanaian immigrants, he was put into foster care when his family could no longer provide for him. He was adopted by Italian parents and was raised in a Jewish household in Brescia.
At age 15, Mario was promoted to the first team of Lumezzane, debuting in a match against Padova in the Serie C1 league. Although he was considered by Barcelona, Balotelli eventually signed with Inter Milan in 2006. In 2007, he earned a spot on the first team and made his Serie A debut. After a number of impressive goals, Mario started to gain widespread attention from the Italian press.
At the age of 18, Balotelli was scoring goals for fun at the Champions League. However, things weren't always bright for Mario. In 2009, he was racially abused by Juventus fans. Although Inter won Serie A that year, Mario would soon start to slip into unprofessional behavior off the pitch. This was made worse when Mourinho started managing the team – a man famous for his focus on discipline.
Mourinho continuously criticized Balotelli throughout his tenure, and the manager refused to play the striker for a Champions League match against Chelsea. Things reached a boiling point when Balotelli tossed his Inter Milan jersey at fans who had booed him. This provoked fans into attacking Mario, and his teammates criticized his actions.
In 2010, Balotelli signed for Manchester City, joining his former head coach Roberto Mancini. As a 22 year old he signed a $36 million contract with Manchester City. He played well during the first season and scored a hat-trick against Aston Villa. However, he still failed to keep a lid on his temper and he continued to receive red cards. Things got worse during his second season, and he was suspended for four matches at one point after kicking another player. In total, he received four red cards during his second season at Manchester City.
In 2013, Mario was signed by AC Milan. Things seemed more stable for him in Italy, and he continued to play well. In 2014, he signed for Liverpool for a 16-million-pound transfer fee. Although he was intended to be a replacement for Luis Suarez, Balotelli failed to make much of an impact, scoring only four goals that season. This disappointing spell caused Liverpool to send Mario back to AC Milan on loan.
Balotelli then played in France for a number of years, first with Nice and then with Marseille. In 2019, he signed a multi-year contract with Brescia, the club of his hometown in Italy.
Mario Balotelli is an Italian professional soccer player who has a net worth of $80 million. Mario's career is best described as "up-and-down." He has experienced many high points throughout the years, but he has failed to deliver on his potential in the eyes of many. The common story with his career is that disciplinary issues and bad behavior get in the way of his success as a professional footballer.