Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli insists he will let his form do the talking in Sunday’s top of the table clash against rivals Manchester United.
After a run-in with the Aston Villa fans last weekend, the Italian is determined to keep his cool against a side he has had rows with before.
During the FA Cup semi-final in March the hot-headed striker clashed with United captain Rio Ferdinand.
But he told The Guardian: “They can say what they want. I won’t say anything to them. I will be focused on the game. All that matters is the result, nothing else.”
“I don’t have anything against (Ferdinand). He is a great player. I didn’t ever speak to him (at Wembley). I was just celebrating, but not against them (United supporters). I showed him the shirt of City and obviously he got angry with me.”
“For me, what happened on the pitch stayed on the pitch and now we are friends like before.”
“Or we respect each other anyway. I’m going to give him the handshake before the game like I give to everyone.”
Whoever wins the game this weekend will top the league at full-time and it could go a long way to showing who has the potential to win the Premier League this season and the next few after that.
Balotelli is confident his side can beat their rivals, and claims the clash has the potential to soon be the best in the world.
“I think we can beat them,” he added. “I think it will be a lot of fun – and soon United v City will be the biggest derby in the world.”
Balotelli is on something of a roll this season, with four goals in his last four games, and claims he is improving under manager Roberto Mancini.
“With Mancini I feel very comfortable. I’ve known him a long time and he’s a good manager,” Balotelli said.
“He believes in me. Even when no one in England believed in me, he did. And he kept on believing. I want to do something important here with him.”