Super Mario Balotelli in need of a power up?
Mario Balotelli has yet to open his account in Ligue 1 Conforama this season, but ahead of OGC Nice's clash with LOSC on Sunday, coach Patrick Vieira thinks there is little reason to worry.
Balotelli, who plundered 18 under Vieira's predecessor Lucien Favre last season, has not scored in the French top-flight since May, and has been subbed off in four of the six games he has started for Les Aiglons this term.
The Nice No. 9, who returned to Italy's international set-up after a nearly four-year hiatus earlier this year, was visibly annoyed after making way for Jean-Victor Makengo in the 1-0 win over Nîmes Olympique last time out.
Watch: Highlights of Nice's narrow 1-0 loss to Nîmes
"It's good that players don’t like getting substituted," Vieira explained to the Ligue 1 Show on beIN SPORTS. "As for his goal, it might come in the next game. I'm not worried about that."
Balotelli and Vieira already knew each other before being reunited at Nice this summer, having been teammates at both Inter Milan and Manchester City, and the coach is refusing to single out his star man for criticism despite his recent misfiring form.
"Allan [Saint-Maximin], like Mario, like [Myziane Maolida], I think that there are still huge improvements to be made offensively," Vieira said. "The chances are being created. That little bit of luck is evading us at the moment."
Watch: All 18 of Balotelli's goals from last season
LOSC will be hoping Balotelli fails to get back to scoring ways on Sunday - the northern club have been the 28-year-old's second-favourite French opponents to date, with the striker scoring four goals in three games against them so far.
Perhaps Vieira's calm is justified, and Super Mario's next power up is just one stage away.