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Safety first

Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli backs safety campaign after fireworks let off in his Cheshire home trigger blaze



Manchester City's on-form striker Mario Balotelli is keen to prove he is a bright spark after all.

The controversial Italian is backing a firework safety campaign just days after crews were called to his plush Cheshire house in the early hours of Saturday.

As revealed by the M.E.N.'s website firefighters discovered a firework had been let off in the first floor bathroom, starting a fire that spread to the rest of the house in leafy Mottram St Andrew.

Just 36 hours later Balotelli, with a flea in his ear from Blues boss Roberto Mancini, struck twice in City's 6-1 derby drubbing of United at Old Trafford.

And now, with bonfire night on the horizon he has come out in support of the Treacle drive launched by police and fire officials to cut down on firework injuries.

Balotelli, who lifted his shirt after scoring the opener in the Old Trafford rout to reveal the message 'Why Always Me?', also claimed it was a friend who set the firework off and said he was 'really, really angry with him'.

He explained: "I didn't set any fireworks off, it was a friend of mine. I didn't know anything about it until I heard the shouting coming from the bathroom.

"Luckily, nobody was injured, and my friend apologised to me for the damage to my house. It was a really stupid thing for him to do, someone could have been really hurt, and I was really, really angry with him about it.

"It is important message that children should not mess with fireworks. They can be very dangerous if they are not used in the right way. People should follow the firework code."

Ten firefighters tackled the blaze at the house.

They were contacted automatically after a smoke alarm - linked to a central control room - was triggered.

The property sustained serious smoke and fire damage leaving Balotelli to spend the night at a hotel.

Since arriving at City from Inter Milan last summer, the flamboyant hitman has shown flashes of brilliance on the pitch but also been involved in more than his fair share of mishaps.

He was sent off at West Brom in November, then again against Dynamo Kiev in a last-16 Europa League tie which Mancini branded "stupid".

Balotelli was also substituted by his exasperated manager in a friendly against LA Galaxy for trying a  'disrespectful'  back-heel shot on goal.

However, in recent weeks he has hit back at his critics with a series of scintillating displays culminating in Sunday's stunning brace in a result that sent shockwaves through the footballing world.

Source
Tags: "that guy", club: manchester city, huh huh huh, ja ja ja ja, lol, mario balotelli
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