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Dec 17, 2012

Balotelli fights fine

Mario Balotelli will take Manchester City to a Premier League tribunal on Wednesday in a bid to overturn a fine for continued ill-discipline.

• Blog: A dish fit for a king

Balotelli, 22, missed about a fifth of City's games last season due to suspensions from red and yellow cards and was fined two weeks' wages, about £350,000, by the club as a consequence. His appeal against the fine was rejected by the club.

The Italian striker has fallen out of favour at City, and didn't travel to Newcastle for Saturday's 3-1 Premier League win, instead staying in Manchester to train alone. He started the 3-2 defeat to Manchester United six days earlier but was substituted early in the second half.

Rumours have persisted about his long-term future with the Premier League champions following a series of indiscretions, but Mancini, who signed Balotelli for £24m from Inter Milan in 2010, insists he still figures heavily in his plans.

"Mario still has a big part to play this season," he said. "To get back into the team he needs to work in training and, when he plays, he needs to play well."

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