London : Italian striker Mario Balotelli, who is out of favour among Liverpool fans, organised a Subbuteo league among his club teammates to help team bonding.
Balotelli has taken up the flick-to-kick game, which was launched in 1947 and has miniature model players, after his on-pitch popularity slumped following a run of dismal performances.
Balotelli, who has loved Subbuteo since his childhood, suggested that the Liverpool lads should all get stuck in and have some fun, with the overall winner lifting a tiny trophy, the Daily Star reported.
Players get together either after working out at Liverpool’s Melwood training ground or taking it in turns to host games at their homes. England’s Rickie Lambert was on top of the table at New Year and told his friends that he was confident of taking home the winner’s cup.
A source from Liverpool revealed that it was Balotelli’s own idea to do something to help team bonding as not all the boys are into playing golf or snooker after training. He added that it turns out the striker has been a proper collector of teams over the years and has the colours of every one he’s ever played for, as well as the Italian national side.
The source revealed that when the boys see who they’re playing next there’s always a load of banter, adding that one of the lads said recently that he looks forward to the games so much that he prefers them to a night out clubbing.