Canadian rap star Drake took his partying to a whole new Premier League when he made best friends with Mario Balotelli during his visit to Manchester at the weekend. Drake was invited down to watch Manchester City's game against Sunderland by madcap Mario, a huge rap music fan. And straight after the 3-3 draw Mario whisked his new buddy over to Zouk Tea Bar & Grill for a slap up Indian meal. Mario clearly made quite the impression on Drake – as he then waxed lyrical about his new pal to his 15,000 fans packing into his Manchester Arena gig on Sunday night. He told the crowds that Mario, watching the gig in a blinged up gold ensemble, was his “new family member” despite only knowing him for two days. He added: “No matter what team he's in, he's an amazing football player.” That endorsement will have pleased Mario – who has come under fire for his petulant behaviour from pundits, fans and Blues boss Roberto Mancini. But hey, he did do his bit to showcase City to Drake at the weekend – letting the rap heart-throb use his executive box at the Etihad Stadium to watch the game, and even getting him a padded sky blue City jacket to take away with him as he jetted off for the next gigs on his ongoing world tour. Mancini will probably be pleased to hear, however, that Mario didn't continue the partying with Drake at his official after-party over at The Bijou Club after that big Sunday night gig. Drake held court at the lavish bash, packed with fans, and even gave an impromptu performance on the mic on the balcony of the club. Stars including Coronation Street's Ryan Thomas and ex-City footballer Shaun Wright-Phillips were among those heading to the after-party revels. It was also an impressive turnaround for the Chapel Street club – which had been hit by an arson attack on Thursday night. Bijou boss Damien Matto said: “We had a great night, Drake loved the place and the atmosphere was fantastic.” And it seems it was not only Mario leaving a lasting impression on Drake – who scored a number one hit in the UK with his Rihanna collaboration What's My Name. For Drake was so impressed with the chillo kebabs and lobster he ate at Zouk on Saturday, I hear he then ordered a huge takeout the very next day from the Chester Street indian restaurant to be delivered to his suite at the swanky Lowry Hotel. Rock 'n' roll...