Barry backs Balotelli for improvement

Gareth Barry has backed Mario Balotelli to recreate last year's form after the striker's goal against Wigan in midweek.

Last Updated: 30/11/12 at 07:21 Post Comment

Mario Balotelli celebrates his goal at Wigan

Mario Balotelli celebrates his goal at Wigan

Manchester City midfielder Gareth Barry has backed Mario Balotelli to recreate last year's form after the striker netted his first Barclays Premier League goal of the season against Wigan.

Balotelli, who made his first start in six matches at the DW Stadium on Wednesday, endured a largely frustrating night but remained focused and gave City the lead with a 69th-minute strike.

James Milner added the second three minutes later with a stunning effort to seal the 2-0 win for Roberto Mancini's side.

"Any striker's first league goal is going to be massive in a season. To be fair to Mario, he has not had loads of chances," Barry said.

"When you do get them you need to score them. He has taken a chance with his start here. It could be good for Mario. Hopefully he can go on a run now.

"Mario is not going to lack in confidence if he misses two or three. He'll keep trying the same things.

"Hopefully his goal will give him a bit more confidence and he can improve from there."

Balotelli was dropped for the match against Tottenham earlier this month and was then kept out by a back injury.

Speculation that the 22-year-old will leave Man City during January's transfer window has continued despite Mancini's denials that he is not looking to move him on.

Barry believes Balotelli wants to stay at the Etihad Stadium and hopes the controversial striker will quickly start to add to his goal tally.

"I think he is happy," Barry said. "If you see him day to day then you'd see no reason for him not to be.

"Obviously he has probably not played as much as he would have liked but he has kept his head as well as anyone else who isn't getting chances.

"He scored some massive goals last season and if he can repeat that this season it'll be good for us."

Barry is relieved that City are back to winning ways after successive draws against Chelsea and Real Madrid, although Wigan caused City plenty of problems and missed several chances to take the lead.

"I think at half-time we knew we had to step it up to get any sort of result," the midfielder said.

"The pitch made it quite tough, it was really heavy. Some of the passes in the first half went astray easily. We stepped it up a bit in the second half and deserved the win in the end.

"We looked solid in defence but didn't create too much. It is always important to get that first goal and it came at the right time."


Click here for completely free £10 bet with Sky Bet & £5 free every week


Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

m only commenting on this (I don't care about Liverpool) because F365's twitter said I had call Matt Stanger a tw*t (which I don't agree with anyway) but I just wanted to be the first. Am I the first?

tk421
Trial And Error Rather Than Transition

S

unday, Sunday. Will there be a fan of either team, who if they are winning after 80 mins, won't still be nervous? This could be anything from 0-0 to 5-5, and no one would bat an eye.

megabrow (cufc)
A Season Of Continuous False Dawns

T

his year I am getting F365 a whack-a-mole game but with Brendan instead of the mole (Like the one with JD on Scrubs) and every time he pops up he says something. Outstanding Whack!, Character Whack!, Magnificent Whack!, Wonderful Composure Whack, Whack f**king Whack. Hours of fun.

hump3.
Trial And Error Rather Than Transition

Footer 365

Premier League: Neil Warnock blasts officials after Crystal Palace's 3-0 defeat at Man City

Neil Warnock said the decision to disallow a Crystal Palace goal in the 3-0 defeat to Manchester City was "disgraceful".

Jose Mourinho rejects idea of retrospective action against divers

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho says it would be a "disaster" to punish divers retrospectively.

Premier League: Arsene Wenger insists Arsenal are prepared to spend in January

Arsene Wenger says he won't buy for the sake of it but has vowed to spend in January if the right player is available.

Mail Box

More Players In The Wrong Bloody Shirt

Plus Cristiano Ronaldo, who looks 'heart-breakingly well-suited to a Real Madrid shirt' according to one United fan. Plus, words from the good doctor and plenty more...

Players Plainly Wearing The Wrong Strip...

There are some players who just look plain daft in whatever shirt they're wearing. Like Cesc and Robin. It's a cracking mailbox with a load of different themes...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property