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Italy's Mario Balotelli set to lose spot; coach Roberto Mancini defends 'bad game'

September 10, 2018 8:09 AM
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Italy coach Roberto Mancini defended Mario Balotelli from criticism of his performance against Poland on Friday, but he hopes a changed side will deliver their first UEFA Nations League win against Portugal on Monday night.

Balotelli was singled out for the most criticism as Italy were held to a 1-1 draw by Poland in Bologna, but Mancini -- who is set to replace him in his attack with Ciro Immobile on Monday -- leapt to his defence at a news conference.

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