Balotelli turned down the chance to attend a prestigious New York gala as part of the Time 100 most influential people in the world.
Mino Raiola said: “It was his decision. He called me on Friday on his return from the ban appeal in Rome to tell me he wasn’t going to New York. He would’ve come back to Italy on the Thursday and not had time to prepare at his best for the Catania game.
“I complimented Mario for his professional attitude, as it was not a small sacrifice giving that up. I then called Galliani to tell him the news and he was speechless. There had been planned meetings with sponsors and the consulate in New York.
“Time magazine’s recognition was a great honour, but it’s good that right now he stays with his teammates and gives his all in the Champions League chase.”