Mancini has likened Materazzi to former basketballer Michael Jordan.
“I tattooed the number 23 because of Marco Materazzi," Mancini told Cronache di Spogliatoio. “Finally, I put it on my shirt. For Marco it was born with the myth of Michael Jordan, for me it starts with him.
“I was born in a family of Inter fans and I wasn't even a defender, but when I saw him playing, with his competitive spirit, with a great left foot, he impressed me.
“He has always been the No23. It was the first tattoo I got. My dad was an Inter fan, for him getting a tattoo about an Inter player was immediately OK, so I had it done in a sly way. I was 15 and convinced my father by getting Marco's number."
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