In the football world it’s one of the most talked about subjects at the moment- and no I am not talking about who will win the Ballon D’or award. I am talking about Mario Balotelli and his failure to settle into life at Liverpool. Everyone has an opinion about why Balotelli has struggled so much, and we thought just for good measure we will throw our opinion into the mix as well.
Balotelli doesn’t really need an intro I guess, the Italian never seems to be far from headlines in one way or another. The former Manchester City striker though is in the headlines mainly for reasons on the pitch.
It’s hard to believe that Balotelli is still just 24 ( I had to check it as I was doubting my own knowledge) .’Super Mario’ as he is also known hence the headline has not adapted to life at Anfield at the moment, and unfortunately the pressure is mounting on the former AC Milan striker.
Mario Balotelli was signed this summer for £16 million in what was seen as a potential bargain and a ‘calculated risk’. Liverpool’s struggles have been unfairly been blamed on Balotelli although some of it is justified – as that what the Ghanian born striker is paid to do. That matter opens up a different debate (why are Liverpool struggling? ) I personally think that is mainly down to the defence and Dejan Lovren (don’t get me started on him).
With Balotelli you’re getting a player with pedigree,this man is a title winner with Manchester City don’t forget, no one in the Liverpool team can say that. With out really stating the obvious here- Mario Balotelli needs time to adjust to the ‘Liverpool way’ of playing.
What also counts against Balotelli is the ‘lack of work rate’ which doesn’t help his case. The talent is there all football fans know that, the problem is though ‘super mario’ needs to ‘knuckle down’. I am sure he is trying, Liverpool manager has publicly backed him- he has to as Balotelli was signed as Luis Suarez’s replacement.
That last statement there ‘Suarez’s replacement’ that’s the problem, maybe we’re all guilty of comapring the 2 too much. Such a comaprison isn’t fair and I feel the outstanding acheivements of the Uruguayan last year only raised the bar for who ever was going to replace him.
One fact remains the same both players are strikers and are paid to score goals, one player did it at Liverpool and at the moment one isn’t. The stat that Mario Balotelli has taken the most shots in Europe wih out scoring is a very unfavourable stat for the Italian, and weakens any other arguments to support Balotelli at the moment.
What Mario Balotelli has in his favour though is his age, and Balotelli has one of the best coaches around at the moment in Brendan Rodgers. The Northern Irishman knows how to improve strikers, to me signing Daniel Sturridge must be one of the highlights of his managerial career (Brendan Rodgers). The further nurturing of Sturridge as well must be admired.
I personally am of the opinion that Mario Balotelli will come good for Liverpool, it goes with out saying that he needs to ‘pull his socks up’. Balotelli has scored goals pretty much everywhere he has gone whether in be the Milan clubs or Manchester City.
The Italian does have to start scoring soon, as there are several strikers that Liverpool have been linked with. If Balotelli’s struggles continue, that could force Rodgers into signing a striker in January which couls see Mario Balotelli sold, that would be sad because I think if Balotelli is sold he will be sold to a European team.
Love him or loath him Mario Balotelli is a player who will always divide opinion.