So irritated does manager Roberto Mancini get by Balotelli's refusal to celebrate goals in a conventional manner that he jokingly declared after his side's 4-0 victory that he would like to "punch" the 20-year-old at times.
It seemed a bit harsh on Balotelli, who has now scored eight goals in 11 appearances since his big-money arrival from Inter Milan. And, as the striker explained, finding the net is only what he expects.
"I am always happy, even when I don't smile," he told www.mcfc.co.uk. "But I feel a striker has to score. It is my job. That is why I don't smile. I am still happy and I can score more."
Balotelli's lack of emotion has been cited as a reason for acute homesickness, which in turn has led to suggestions of a preferred move to Milan. The forward attempted to play down such talk, insisting he was purely focused on helping the City cause.
"I am very happy even if the journalists in Italy say I want to go to Milan," he said. "I am here and I am working hard in training. I want to be an important man for this team and the results are on the pitch."