Italian footballer Mario Balotelli recently rejected the call to play on Ghana’s Black Stars squad ahead of the 2018 World Cup.
The 25-year-old was born to Ghanaian immigrants in Sicily in 1990 with the surname Barwuah. When he was 3, Barwuah’s parents, Thomas and Rose Barwuah, reportedly gave him up for adoption due to the dire state of his intestines, which needed repeated surgery.
According to the Barwuahs, they placed their son in foster care so that he could receive the health care that his life-threatening condition required. Soon after, Mario joined Francesco and Silvia Balotelli part of the week, with visits to his biological family taking place over the weekend.
Eventually, though, Mario moved in with the Balotelli’s permanently and adopted their surname. The Barwuahs contend that, from this time, Mario began treating them with “indifference.”
Balotelli & Black Stars
With the next World Cup on the horizon, Balotelli recently made it crystal clear that he had no intention of ever playing for Ghana.
“Ghana wanted me to play for them, but that was never going to happen. At the same time, none of this chaos would’ve happened either. I know it seems rough to say this, but if that moment of crisis had arrived when I had to make my decision, I don’t know if I would’ve chosen to play for Italy, Balotelli said.
“It’s not right. I was born in Italy, grew up in Italy, I’ve never even been to Ghana – even if I will go – so for the law, it’s only right that I am Italian,” he added.
Not surprisingly, Balotelli’s statements are seen as quite controversial and have elicited a number of responses: While some Ghanaians support Balotelli’s decision because of Ghana’s ”corrupted” football association, others have rejected Balotelli’s statements.
For example, a commenter called “Common Sense” wrote on one forum:
“THEY WILL NOT RESPECT YOU TO THE END OF YOUR LIFE,YOUR SMALL BOY AND THEY WILL ALWAYS CALL YOU MONKEY,SEE NOW THEY HAVE SACKED YOU FROM ITALIAN NATIONAL TEAM,YOU THINK YOUR SMART.
A “Baba” wondered:
What makes him think as a black man he would be accepted as an Italian.[sic]
I don’t blame Balotelli, he was young and knew nothing and sincehe [sic] decided to cut off his biological parents at an early age he did not have the right support.
In anycase, experience they say is the best teacher. Good luck Balo.
And “Yellow Man” wrote:
There’s another Nigerian guy playing for Italy now. Conte featured him in the ffirst [sic] match and the relegated him to the bench. I told my neighbor that I will prefer to play for an unknown nation in football than to play for any European country as a black man.After all that happened to Ballo black people are still queuing to play for Europe? No brains my brother
Last summer, Balotelli disappointed Sampdoria after he turned down an offer to get signed on loan from Liverpool. Meanwhile, Liverpool maintains that Balotelli does not fit into Jurgen Klopp‘s plans, and described Balotelli as his own enemy.