Mario Balotelli's comparisons to Eric Cantona may be so exaggerated they could be deemed libellous against the Frenchman, but one parallel that isn't an insult is the Manchester City striker's coolness when it comes to penalty taking, as he exemplified again against Borussia Dortmund.
Sergio Agüero's wish to take the 89th minute penalty which rescued a point for City was never going to be granted with Balotelli, a late substitute, on the pitch. The Argentine huffed and puffed after he was rebuked but the only thing admirable about his desire to hit the spotkick was that he had the audacity to made the request.
Dortmund's goalkeeper and captain, Roman Weidenfeller, gave Balotelli a few words of 'advice' before the referee blew his whistle, but that only made the 23-year-old more determined to humiliate him.
And he did just that. As Weidenfeller animatedly moved along and off his line, Balotelli stroked the ball into the corner of the net before fishing it out to run back to the centre circle. Along the way, he could not resist making a yapping gesture to the German for having the gall to even try and put him off.
Balotelli is so good from 12 yards because of his confidence to stand out as one of the few players who actua;;u change their mind when approaching the ball, which has given him a now famed mental edge.
Yakubu used to do likewise for Everton and Middlesbrough. He did miss two spotkicks in a single game for Boro once, but he invariably waited for the goalkeeper to make his move before placing the ball the other side of him.
Balotelli's 90th minute leveller on Wednesday was his second crucial stoppage time penalty he converted in a blue shirt. One of City's most important goals in their Premier League-winning campaign last season was his winner at home to Tottenham in January. Brad Friedel tried to remain still for as long as possible, but in doing that Balotelli placed the ball in the left-hand corner and well out of his nemesis' reach.
He has scored seven times from seven penalties since he signed for the Citizens in 2010 while Cantona converted 17 out of his 19 spotkicks. On the two occasions he failed, he went on to score in the second half of both games.
Joe Hart, man of the match in the draw at home to Dortmund, has given his fellow keepers hope however...
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