Catania 1-3 AC Milan

Balotelli subbed after 'racial abuse'

December 1, 2013
By Ben Gladwell, Italy Correspondent

Mario Balotelli was substituted by AC Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri in the Serie A Sunday lunchtime win over Catania after appearing to accuse Nicolas Spolli of racial abuse.

Nicolas Spolli Mario Balotelli exchange
GettyImagesNicolas Spolli and Mario Balotelli exchange words during AC Milan's win at Catania.

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Balotelli, who scored Milan's second goal of the game, had to be held back by his teammates after confronting Spolli following a tackle with the Catania defender.

Italy international Balotelli appeared to accuse Spolli of racially insulting him, although it was not clear what the Argentine had allegedly said.

The former Manchester City forward was pushed back towards his own bench by his teammates and, only minutes later, Allegri chose to replace him with Milan, leading 2-1 at the time, going on to win 3-1.

"There was a moment in which Balotelli clashed with Spolli, but he [Balotelli] did well then to score with a free-kick," Allegri told Sky television.

"I don't know if there were any insults. There was a lot of tension on the field and so I preferred to protect him from it. Maybe we were all a bit tired."

At the end of the game, Balotelli then made a gesture to the Catania fans who were booing him, raising three fingers indicating the goals his side scored in what was their first away win of the season.

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