Manchester City may be sitting pretty atop the Premier League, but that doesn’t stop manager Roberto Mancini’s almost comical animation on the touchline at times.
The Italian, adored by City fans, has had others ranting and raving in weeks gone by, with his gesticulations calling for players to be carded by the referee deemed unsporting.
Mancini himself apologised for his initial waving of an imaginary card, during City’s 3-0 triumph over Liverpool in early January.
However, after repeating the gesture at the DW Stadium in the hope of seeing Maynor Figueroa dismissed for a handball, the former Inter Milan boss defended his actions whilst condemning Wayne Rooney, telling BBC Sport, “I did the waving of an imaginary card because Rooney did this, but this is normal when there was one chance like today.”
“I am on the bench. It’s different from a player who is near the referee. From the bench it’s what you think at the moment, but the referee doesn’t see you on the bench.”
With Mancini now pictured making these gestures twice in the past month, Ladbrokes are offering 7/4 that the Italian waves an imaginary card in Sunday’s crucial match with Tottenham at Eastlands.
Mancini, whose protests to the fourth official at Wigan were very lengthy, can also be backed at 25/1 to be sent off during the clash.
Meanwhile, Wayne Rooney, who Mancini criticised for his part in Vincent Kompany’s dismissal during the Manchester derby, is just 5/2 to wave an imaginary card against Arsenal at the weekend.
Rooney, who took to Twitter to defend his actions in the aftermath of Man United’s win at City, also tweeted in reaction to last night’s televised game, asking “was Mancini asking for a red???”
The controversial England striker is 14/1 to himself be dismissed at The Emirates on Sunday.