MILAN (AP): Former Inter Milan striker Mario Balotelli made a surprise visit at the news conference on Tuesday to present Andrea Stramaccioni as the new coach of the Serie A club.
Balotelli, who spent three seasons at Inter before moving to Manchester City in 2010, gatecrashed the conference and caused Stramaccioni to cry: “What a surprise!”
The 21-year-old Balotelli had earlier driven to the club’s training ground in a Ferrari to greet his former teammates.
“It made me happy to see my ex teammates again,” Balotelli said. “I saw nearly all of them, it was a great emotion.
“I wish Stramaccioni all the best, and also the squad. It’s not an easy moment for them but I hope they can start having great games.”
Balotelli walked into the press room while Stramaccioni was responding to questions and everyone burst into laughter.
He shook hands with the new Inter coach as well as technical director Marco Branca and others seated at the table before leaving as suddenly as he had arrived.
It is the latest in a list of madcap antics from Balotelli, who has generated numerous headlines since his arrival in England with stories such as friends setting off fireworks in his bathroom. He has also turned up for work wearing a woolly hat that looked like a rooster’s comb, and was once filmed struggling with the simple task of pulling on a vest.
Formerly youth club coach, Stramaccioni was promoted after Claudio Ranieri was sacked on Monday. He is Inter’s fifth manager since Jose Mourinho departed after leading Inter to a treble in 2010.
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- Balotelli charged with violent conduct
- Manchester City fine Balotelli for discipline breach
- Mourinho urges Chelsea and Inter fans to back coaches