Brian Kidd, assistant manager at Manchester City, has asked that star player Mario Balotelli be judged against a background of homesickness for the Italian. The 20 year old is under attack for his surly manner and miserable demeanour even after scoring a hat-trick against Aston Villa.

After scoring eight times in 11 appearances for City the club are prepared to give the player time to settle.

"There has to be an empathy towards players," said Kidd.

"When they do feel this homesickness you don't brow beat them all the time.

"The players have been very good with Mario too. There is an understanding there.

"Everyone tends to look at the materialistic side of things but it is never easy."

Kidd also reports a is a popular figure in the dressing room.

"Mario is working hard in training and all the lads were genuinely pleased for him when he got his hat-trick," said Kidd.

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