Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli has admitted that he will walk off the pitch if he is subject to racist abuse whilst competing for Italy at Euro 2012.
Eastern Europe has a track record of unsavoury racism incidents, with worries that the tournament in Ukraine and Poland could have a nasty undercurrent to it.
Balotelli was subject of racist abuse when in a bar in Rome in 2009, and has admitted that he will not accept similar behaviour this summer.
“I will not accept racism at all. It’s unacceptable. If someone throws a banana at me in the street, I will go to jail, because I will kill them,” he told France Football, translated to English by The Daily Mail.
“Let’s see what happens at the Euros. I hope it will pass without a problem. I really couldn’t deal with that.
“It was lucky that the police arrived quickly because, I swear, I would have beaten them. I would have really destroyed them. I hope it never happens again,” he confessed.
Balotelli went on to admit that he is happy at Manchester City, but feels that he is a genius and is not understood.
“I would like to stay at City, because here I have affection. Will I stay? I don’t know. I think so.
“It’s good luck that Roberto Mancini appreciates and understands me. Mancini always gives me confidence. Those who know me, love me. Those who don’t know me, love me, too, or they hate me.
“It’s said that geniuses are misunderstood. But maybe it is because the genius is so different that people are not capable of understanding them. Yes, I think I’m a genius. But I don’t think I’m a rebel. I have my life, my world, I act how I want, without bugging anyone,” he concluded.
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