Manchester City - Mario Balotelli Takes Club to Tribunal


Mario Ballotelli, Manchester City

Manchester City - Mario Balotelli Takes Club to Tribunal

The 22-year-old Italian missed 11 games domestically and in Europe last season because of suspensions.

Last season Ballotelli received nine yellow cards and three reds - one of them retrospective. City began the disciplinary process after Balotelli was sent off against Arsenal in April 2012. Balotelli was taken off early in the second half of City's 3-2 defeat by Manchester United on 9 December, and then left out of their squad altogether for the 3-1 win at Newcastle over the weekend.

After the match, City manager Roberto Mancini said: "At this moment, Mario is not in good form and for this reason he is at home. It is only for this reason. To get back into the team he needs to work in training and when he plays, he needs to play well."

Balotelli appealed to City against the decision but an independent panel of City's board upheld the penalty.

The case will now be heard by a three-man panel as Balotelli will face City at a Premier League tribunal in London on Wednesday.

Ballotelli will appear in person, along with his Italian lawyer and a representative from the Professional Footballers' Association - City will bring their legal team.

A two-week fine is the maximum penalty stipulated in standard player contracts however City are privately confident of winning.

Gordon Taylor, chief exec of the PFA remarked that it is unusual for internal disputes between clubs and their players to go to a Premier League tribunal.

"We try to avoid situations like this wherever possible, but the player and club have not been able to resolve this situation," said Taylor.

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