Report: Mario Balotelli sets house on fire with fireworks less than 48 hours before Manchester derby

Police and a fire crew were called to the Italian striker's home in the early hours of Saturday morning, with breathing apparatus, hose reels and a smoke fan required.
Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli had to escape from his burning house after fireworks had set fire to the bathroom, reports have revealed.

The Guardian
reports the 21-year-old managed to leave his home without suffering injury just before 1 a.m. local time on Saturday - a day before Manchester City took on Manchester United at Old Trafford.

"At just before 1 a.m. on Saturday we were called to a report of a house fire at a residential home in Mottram St Andrew," said a police spokesman.

"Police provided assistance to Cheshire fire and rescue service as well as ensuring residents were accounted for and there was no danger to surrounding properties.

"At this time, the cause of the fire is being examined by fire investigators and the police. However, it is not thought to be suspicious."

On Monday, club teammate Nigel de Jong insisted the Italy international had turned a corner regarding his behavior, following early incidents during his career at City which includes a reported case of throwing darts at youth players at the club's training ground.

Balotelli was able to train on Saturday morning after sleeping in a hotel in Manchester, but the fire was believed to be caused by the striker and a group of his friends setting off fireworks through the bathroom window.

"Four breathing apparatus and two hose reel water jets were used to deal with the fire and a large fan was used to clear the smoke from the property," read a statement from the fire service.

"Crews managed to put the fire out within half an hour of arriving but remained at the scene until 2:45 a.m. to prevent any possible flare-ups. Smoke alarms were fitted at the property and the occupiers were able to get out unharmed. The fire was caused by a firework."

Balotelli started for Manchester City in Saturday's derby.

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