FA charge for Balotelli

The charge against the Italy international relates to an allegedly racist and anti-semitic comment he made on Instagram.

“Mario Balotelli has been charged by the FA in relation to a recent posting on social media,??? the FA said in a statement.

“It is alleged the Liverpool player breached FA rule E3[1] in that his posting was abusive and/or insulting and/or improper.

“It is further alleged that this is an ‘aggravated breach’ as defined by FA rule E3[2] as it included a reference to ethnic origin and/or colour and/or race and/or nationality and/or religion or belief.”

Balotelli had until 6pm on Friday to submit an explanation for his comments to the FA and having been charged, he now has until the same time on December 15 to respond to the charge.

A Liverpool club spokesperson said: “We acknowledge the FA’s decision and the player will work through the process to answer the charge.

“While that process is ongoing, the club will not be making any further comment.”

The striker apologised himself on Monday, tweeting: “I apologize if I’ve offended anyone. The post was meant to be anti-racist with humour. I now understand that out of context (it) may have the opposite effect.”

The 24-year-old, who will miss Liverpool’s Premier League game against Sunderland on Saturday with a groin injury, has scored just twice in his 14 appearances for Brendan Rodgers??? side this season.