He is the gift that keeps giving. Striker Mario Balotelli has reported for the start of pre-season training with Liverpool after spending last season on loan at AC Milan where he scored just one goal in 23 appearances in Serie A.
The former Manchester City man failed to make Italy’s squad for Euro 2016 and earlier this week he admitted that he has under-achieved in the last couple of seasons.
‘I have not done enough in recent years. I can do much better but it takes time.
‘On a scale of one to 10, I have only reached five. But I will get to 10 eventually because that is my goal.
‘I want to win the Ballon d’Or, although I realise I got stuck at five out of 10 in the last two years when my goal was to get closer to 10.
‘I know people will laugh when I say I want the Ballon d’Or. I have not done everything needed to become the best. But the most important thing is that I have realised my mistakes and it is not too late yet.
‘I don’t want to reach the end of my career thinking that I have not done everything to become the best.’
“I want to win the Ballon d’Or” Good to see that Super Mario’s ego was not damaged during his time in Milan!
If there was ever a player who did not fit Jurgen Klopp’s high pressure, high intensity style of football it is Balotelli. Closing down opponents and working hard for the team are not traits that he has.
I cannot envision any scenario where Balotelli is still with Liverpool when the transfer window closes. He has reportedly turned down potential moves to Turkey and China in recent weeks, which leaves Spain as the only potential spot for him in Europe.
No Serie A clubs want him after his disastrous loan spell at AC Milan last season and I cannot imagine any Premier League manager wanting him either.
Which limits the options that Liverpool have in trying to offload him again this summer.