The Italian striker, no stranger to controversy during his spells at the Etihad and Anfield over the years, has enjoyed something of a renaissance in France in the last year.
But his club have endured a poor start to the season and surrendered a 2-0 lead to lose 4-2 to rivals Marseille last time out.
Balotelli had opened the scoring but at 4-2 down he passed up the opportunity to get his side back in the game from the penalty spot and instead allowed teammate Plea to take the spot kick.
He duly missed and after the game Balotelli was accused by some sections of the French press of bottling it in the big derby match.
That has sparked a furious response from Super Mario who has quashed claims that he was too scared to take the penalty, as reported by Get France Football News.
"Don’t tell me that I was scared to take the penalty," Balotelli said, as reported by Get France Football News.
"I have taken much more difficult ones. I was trying to help a team-mate who was having a difficult evening.
"Seriously, those who think I was scared have never seen me play football. Idiot."
Balotelli was also caught on camera verbally abusing his teammates at half-time in the game, as reported by The Sun.
The 27-year-old was filmed punching an advertising board on his way back to the changing room where he is reported to have sworn at teammates and scalded them for conceding 3 goals in 10 minutes.
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