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NEWS: Italy recall Balotelli for first time since 2018

Mario Balotelli has won an Italy recall more than three years after his last appearance for the Azzurri.

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Mario Balotelli has won an Italy recall more than three years after his last appearance for the Azzurri.

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Manager Roberto Mancini has included Balotelli in a 35-man get-together from January 26-28 ahead of Italy’s World Cup play-off date in March.

The former Liverpool and Manchester City striker, who now plays for Turkish club Adana Demirspor, won the last of his 36 caps in September 2018.

Balotelli, 31, joined Adana – the 10th club of his colourful career – last July and has scored eight goals in 19 Turkish Super League appearances.

Goalkeeper Marco Carnesecchi, defenders Luiz Felipe and Giorgio Scalvini, midfielders Nicolo Fagioli, Davide Frattesi and Samuele Ricci and forward Joao Pedro have been called up by Mancini for the first time.

Italy host North Macedonia in their World Cup play-off semi-final on March 24, with the winners away to Portugal or Turkey five days later to vie for a place at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

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