‘He set me up’ – How ex-Man City star Mario Balotelli sabotaged Micah Richards’ first day at Fiorentina

During his time at the Etihad Stadium, Richards managed to win two Premier League titles, an FA and League Cup before departing City on loan in 2014. In a bid to gain more playing time, the former England international took the plunge and joined the Florence club.

Unfortunately for the regular Match of the Day and Sky Sports pundit, his Italian was non-existent so in a bid to come across well to his new employers Richards sought advice from his former teammate Balotelli. Recalling what happened on The Rest is Football podcast, the 35-year-old soon realised he had made a mistake.

He explained: “I&aposve got a bad story. I went to Fiorentina on the last day of the transfer window and obviously I don&apost speak Italian.

“I&aposve got &apossi&apos – yes, basically. And like the absolute idiot I am, I spoke to Balotelli to ask: &aposWhat shall I say when I am greeting someone?&apos”

At this point, his co-hosts Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer burst out into laughter at the thought of asking the notoriously controversial Balotelli for help but Richards was not done. “Hes normally good,” Richards continued.

“[Anyway] I go and meet the manager, [Vincenzo] Montella. I got up to him, I shake his hand and say: &aposTesta di cazzio&apos. And I think it means you f****** d*******.