Manchester City Unlikely To Replace Mario Balotelli

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Etihad Stadium manager more likely to sign a defender.

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Manchester city manager Roberto Mancini admits he is unlikely to bring in a new striker to replace Mario Balotelli in the transfer window with his priority to sign defensive cover.

Italian international Balotelli left the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday after Manchester City agreed to sell him to AC Milan for an initial £17million, bring an end to his rollercoaster two-and-a-half year spell in the Premier League.

But, speaking after his side’s goalless draw at Queens Park Rangers on Tuesday, Mancini cast his doubts over signing a new forward to replace Balotelli and said he is prepared to complete the season with Sergio Aguero, Carlos Tevez and Edin Dzeko.

“We are very sorry because we love Mario,” Sky Sports quote Mancini as saying. “But I think that he had this big chance to go back to Italy and to play for another top club like Milan. Four days ago we didn’t have nothing, but the last two days we have started to talk about this [Balotelli’s transfer].

“I don’t know [about a replacement], we have three strikers, we will see, we only have two days it is difficult to get the player now.”

A defender is Mancini’s priority having lost captain Vincent Kompany to a hamstring injury and with Kolo Toure on international duty at the African Nations Cup with the Ivory Coast.

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