Mario Balotelli has admitted his off-field antics are ‘strange’ but insisted he is ‘not crazy’.The Manchester City striker made news again last month when he had to flee his home after fireworks were set off in his bathroom.
But, training with the Italy squad ahead of their friendly in Poland, Balotelli denied he liked the attention.
‘When you are famous, there’s a tendency to talk more about my personal life than what I do on the pitch,’ he said.
‘It annoys me but I am not crazy – although sometimes I do strange things that are considered entertaining.’
The 21-year-old prefers to do his talking on the pitch and feels he has improved as a player since joining City from Inter Milan in the summer of 2010.
‘The Premier League has taught me to run a lot,’ he added.
‘To go for the ball and when I lose it to press to recover it. Now I have more playing time and this gives me more confidence.
‘[Italy coach Cesare] Prandelli and [City boss Roberto] Mancini have given me the calmness to play, something I didn’t have before.’
And Balotelli, who is under contract at City until 2015, believes his long-term future is in the Premier League.
‘I don’t miss Serie A,’ he said. ‘I’m very happy to be in England. ‘Italian football has been in decline.
‘The Premier League is beautiful and I play for the strongest team in England.
‘I want to remain at City. I don’t see a return to play in Italy in the future