Super Mario Ready

Italian striker Mario Balotelli is hoping to get back on track as he joined Olympique de Marseille from fellow Ligue 1 side Nice on a six-month contract. The 28-year-old, who also played for Inter Milan,  has yet to score a league goal this season after netting 33 from 51 Ligue 1 games in the two previous seasons. Marseille are seventh in the standings, level on 31 points with eighth-placed Nice who have played a game more. “When this happens the striker is responsible for the situation but sometimes there are external factors. I was supposed to leave at the beginning of the season, then I didn’t leave,” Balotelli told a news conference. “But I will make up for it.” Asked what his ambitions were, he joked: “My ambition is to finish this news conference, go to training and see if I can play on Friday.” Marseille take on second-placed Lille on Friday, but coach rudi-garcia said at best Balotelli would come off the bench. “He hasn’t played or trained for a month, it is impossible to see him start on Friday,” Garcia told reporters. “We will have to wait to see how long it takes him to be at 100 percent.”

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