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Balotelli scores four minutes after his Serie B Monza debut

The veteran striker scored early in his new club’s 3-0 win over Salernitana on Wednesday

Mario Balotelli made a Serie B start to life with a first strike after just four minutes for Monza against Salernitana.

Former AC Milan and Manchester city forward Balotelli signed for Monza – owned by former Rossoneri boss Silvio Berlusconi – earlier this month on a contract until the end of the season.

The 30-year-old made his second-place bow on Wednesday, lining up alongside Kevin-Prince Boateng – another ex-Milanese – from the home start to the league leaders.

Balotelli only needed three minutes and 53 seconds to get the scoresheet as he returned Carlos Augusto’s cross with the first shot of the game and his first touch for his new team.

Monza added two more goals as they won the game 3-0 at Brianteo Stadium.

Balotelli played in the top flight in Italy, England and France but only in League 1, with Nice in 2016, had he already scored on his debut in a new league.

After Balotelli moved to Monza, his agent Mino Raiola says veteran striker could be a major factor as the club aim to reach the elite for the first time in its history.

Raiola pointed to the influence of former AC Milan president Adriano Galliani, who is now at the helm of Monza.

“[Balotelli] can be fundamental to Monza, “said Raiola at this year’s Golden Boy Awards.” His potential is undisputed, but he is overdue in his preparations and we will do all we can to get him into top form.

“Having Balotelli sends the signal that Monza doesn’t want to play in Serie B for long. Galliani is someone I respect a lot. Our friendship goes back to his time with Milan.”

Wednesday’s victory was a major milestone in Monza’s quest to secure series A football for the 2021-22 season. The club now sit third in the Serie B standings, falling within two points of league leaders Salernitana.

Balotelli will hope to continue his strong start in life with Monza when his club face Lecce in another league game on Monday.

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