"I’m Mario Balotelli. I’m 23 years old, and I didn’t choose to be Italian. I strongly wanted [to be Italian] because I was born in Italy and have always lived in ITALY. I was really motivated for this World Cup and I’m sad, angry and disappointed with myself. … I’m not going to allow the blame to be placed only on me this time because Mario Balotelli gave his all for the national team and didn’t do anything wrong [character-wise]. So look for another excuse because Mario Balotelli… is prepared to move forward stronger than before and with his head held high, honored to have given his all for his country. Or maybe, like you say, I’m not Italian. Africans would never cast aside one of their ‘brothers.’ NEVER. In this sense us blacks, as you call us, are light-years ahead. There’s no shame on who misses a goal or runs less or more."