Updated: Sunday, 20th October 2019 @ 6:24am

'Think about your job': Roberto Mancini warns Mario Balotelli as Manchester City lose derby battle

'Think about your job': Roberto Mancini warns Mario Balotelli as Manchester City lose derby battle

By Chris Bailey

Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini urged bad-boy striker Mario Balotelli to become more professional if he wants to stay at the Etihad after their derby day defeat.

Wayne Rooney gave United a 2-0 half time lead before Yaya Toure’s neat finish on the hour was followed by a Pablo Zabaleta leveller five minutes before time, only for Robin Van Persie to grab a stoppage-time win from a deflected free-kick.

The Italian striker was replaced by Carlos Tevez early in the second half and Mancini pointed the finger at for an ineffectual display, hinting Balotelli must improve to save his City career.

Mancini said: "I love Mario but I think it's important for him to start thinking about his job. He can't continue to play like today.

"When a player has this quality you can't understand he will throw it out the window. This is incredible.”

The loss leaves the Blues six points behind United in the Premier League table, but Mancini believes his side – who he felt dominated the game – have the quality to catch up.

He also shrugged off the loss of City’s two-year unbeaten record, and was satisfied with his side’s desire to win the game.

"We won the league with the last touch of the ball last year. This can happen. But we didn't deserve to lose this game,” said the Italian.

“We played very well. We can say from this game that we played, but they won.

"We’re upset they won the game, because for 20 minutes they didn't touch the ball and the first chance they got they scored a goal. We recovered very well and we dominated the second half.

“We have showed we are a really strong team and we can win this title again. We can't win always.

“We wanted to win the game and created the chances.

“We can’t win always for one year or for three years. There is a moment you lose at home, and it happened today. It’s finished for this year.”

Image courtesy of Manchester City, via YouTube, with thanks.

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