Balotelli regrets ref insult

Mario Balotelli (AFP)
Mario Balotelli (AFP)
Milan - AC Milan striker Mario Balotelli has apologised over the incident which led to the three-game suspension he received for insulting a referee, the Serie A club said on Thursday.

The Italy international was banned for insulting and threatening the referee at the end of the Serie A game that Milan lost 2-1 at home to Napoli on Sunday.

He was yellow-carded in the second half and given a second booking, which carries a red card, after the final whistle for threatening the official.

"I am sorry for my teammates, who train and work hard with me," the club website quoted Balotelli as telling Sky TV. "With that (behaviour) I left them alone."

The striker continued: "I apologise to (the official) too. I should not have reacted in that way. But against Napoli it was the same old story. Fouls against me do not count, then when I do a small thing...

"I realise, however, that I must be able to resist in certain situations. Mario was wrong, therefore he apologises."

On Wednesday, Balotelli missed Milan's 3-3 draw at Bologna. He is also out for the forthcoming home game with Sampdoria, and the match at champions Juventus.

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