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De Gea backed by Hierro despite fan vote

Spain
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Balotelli to undergo minor eye operation

Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli is due to undergo an eye operation in the coming days but is expected to make a quick return.

• Manchester City blog
• Man City sign quintet

Balotelli wears contact lenses on the field but has had issues with conjunctivitis, and first-team coach David Platt said that the Italian has been suffering with the problem for some time.

"Mario will have an operation in a few days' time," Platt said. "It's not a major procedure and he should be back quite quickly. I think he is okay - it is just a normal procedure. It is just a minor operation. The contact lenses are the issue when he gets it, conjunctivitis. He can't get his contact lenses in, so he can't really play."

Balotelli, who was left on the bench for Saturday's 3-1 victory at home to Queens Park Rangers, will not be available for Italy's World Cup qualifiers against Bulgaria and Malta but Platt says he will not be out for a long period.

"I've heard suggestions he will be out for a month but that's not true and I'm not sure where that came from. Hopefully it will correct a problem he's been having for some time and he can move on from there."

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