Featured Matches
Previous
Colorado
Chivas USA
1:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Morelia
Atlas
12:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Santos
Cruz Azul
2:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Gimnasia La Plata
Argentinos Juniors
9:10 PM GMT
Game Details
Newell's Old Boys
Talleres de Córdoba
12:15 AM GMT
Game Details
Standard Liege
Royal Charleroi SC
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Queen's Park
Berwick Rangers
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Queen's Park
Berwick Rangers
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Standard Liege
Royal Charleroi SC
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Vestsjaelland
Odense BK
4:30 PM GMT
Game Details
UCD
Derry City
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Bohemians
Cork
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Shamrock
Drogheda Utd
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Colorado
Chivas USA
1:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Morelia
Atlas
12:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Santos
Cruz Azul
2:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Gimnasia La Plata
Argentinos Juniors
9:10 PM GMT
Game Details
Newell's Old Boys
Talleres de Córdoba
12:15 AM GMT
Game Details
Atlante
Altamira
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Mineros de Zacatecas
Necaxa
12:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Oeste
Luverdense
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
América RN
América Mineiro
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Boa MG
Bragantino
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Antofagasta
Audax Italiano
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Real Garcilaso
Melgar
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Nacional
Deportivo Capiatá
8:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Western New York Flash
Boston Breakers
11:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Next
 Posted by ESPN Staff
Aug 13, 2008

Inter's Balotelli sets sights on first Italian cap

MILAN, August 13 (National Team) - Internazionale teenager Mario Balotelli has set his sights on a place in the Azzurri team after being granted Italian citizenship on Wednesday.

Of Ghanaian origin, Balotelli was born in Palermo and adopted by an Italian family. However, as the adoption was never made official he was forced to wait until his 18th birthday before applying for the Italian nationality.

Balotelli did so on Tuesday and, now a proud owner of an Italian passport, he is eager to kick-start his Azzurri career.

'It's not my dream, but my aim,' he said. 'For anyone who feels patriotic, to pull on the Azzurri shirt is the top.

'For me it's a great emotion, I have waited for this day for a long time. It's an important moment for me and my family. I am proud to be Italian.

'It was more emotional than my Serie A debut. Now the best present would be to get into the national team, the senior one, but even the Under-21 (side) would be very good.'

Balotelli, whose nickname is 'SuperMario', turned down the chance to play for Ghana several times - the first call-up coming days after his 17th birthday.

And the youngster feels he made the right decision.

'I'm Italian from birth but it's only become fact today,' added Balotelli. 'There was a moment in which I considered accepting the offer and saying yes to the Ghana side, but then the idea of playing for the country where I have been since birth prevailed.

'Now I'm waiting for a call from (Italy coach Marcello) Lippi or (under-21 coach Pierluigi) Casiraghi.'

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.