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Balotelli: I'm the coolest player in the Italy squad

Thursday, May 29, 2014 by Goal.com

Watch the striker interview himself, speaking with confidence about his abilities and the Azzurri's chances in Brazil this summer, to mark the launch of PUMA Tricks boots

Mario Balotelli has joked that he is the quickest, coolest and best player in Italy's squad and is excited to feature in his first World Cup.

The striker, 23, scored 18 goals for AC Milan this season in 41 appearances and is expected to be part of the starting XI when the Azzurri line up under Cesare Prandelli in Brazil.

Despite a turbulent year at San Siro, Balotelli remains typically confident in his abilities and insists he always thought he would feature on the biggest international football stage.

"The quickest in the Italy squad? That's me," he said in a new film to mark the launch of PUMA Tricks. "The best? Don't make me do this, you know who is the best!

"The most technical? You know that one as well. The funniest? You already know that one too. The coolest? Come on, that one is really obvious!"

"I always believed I'd be at the World Cup. It's every child's dream to play at the World Cup. You start playing football dreaming about that. I have done well in my career and I'm lucky to have the chance."

Balotelli has set his sights on outscoring his rivals to land the Golden Boot this summer and believes Italy have got even better since he helped to fire them to the final of Euro 2012.

"When I win the Golden Boot, it will go in my wardrobe with the rest of my shoes!" he laughed.

"I struggled a bit at the beginning of Euro 2012, but then after that it went very well! I believe that Italy are a stronger team now then we were then. I don't know why."

"We are a strong team and try to play an important part in the same way that other big players do, like Pirlo, Buffon and three or four other key members of the team."

Balotelli was 15 years old when Italy lifted the World Cup in 2006 and recalled the euphoria in his hometown of Brescia when Fabio Cannavaro and his team-mates beat France on penalties.

"I remember watching the game with my friends on a giant screen in Brescia," he said. "I had never seen Brescia so full of people in my life. It was a fantastic experience."

"The most important thing was that we won - [Zinedine] Zidane is Zidane, I would have told the referee that is was a red card [when he was sent off for headbutting Marco Materazzi]. But how can you criticise Zidane?"

Balotelli is among a number of global superstars who will be sporting the new PUMA Tricks boots in Brazil this summer.

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