Euro 2012: Mario Balotelli threatens to 'kill' banana-throwing fans

Balotelli

The Italy and Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli has threatened to kill anyone who throws a banana at him in the street or on the pitch during the Euro 2012 finals in Poland and Ukraine.

His comments come a day after Sol Campbell, speaking on Panorama, told England fans not to travel to the competition because they could "end up coming back in a coffin".

Balotelli, who is preparing with the Italian team for their Group C fixtures, said: "I will not accept racism at all. It's unacceptable. If someone throws a banana at me in the street, I will go to jail, because I will kill them."

The 21-year-old is not a stranger to racism and was once pelted with bananas in a Rome bar before the European Under-21 Championships in June 2009. "It was lucky that the police arrived quickly because, I swear, I would have beaten them. I would have really destroyed them. I hope it never happens again." He has been the victim of racist abuse on several occasions – most recently in February when Porto were fined over the behaviour of their supporters in a Europa League tie against City.

"Let's see what happens at the Euros," he added. "I hope it will pass without a problem."

The Italian also described himself as a genius, saying: "I think I am a genius but not a rebel. I have my life, my world, I do what I want, without annoying anyone. I believe I am more intelligent than the average person. The talent God gave me is beautiful and wonderful but it is difficult because you are always facing other people keen to judge you."

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by Marcus Christenson, for The Guardian on Wednesday 30th May 2012 01.01 Europe/London

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