AC Milan No2 Mauro Tassotti admits Mario Balotelli is crucial to their hopes.

Balotelli has completed his two-match ban - which had originally been three, but reduced on appeal - and is set to start against Catania on Sunday evening.

"Mario is a very important player and proved that the moment he came into the team," said Tassotti.

"Not having him for these two games was a heavy blow, even if Giampaolo Pazzini returned from injury. Having everyone at our disposal is better."