26 Aug 2015

Done Deal: After passing his medical, 'fearsome' £16 attacker confirms Liverpool transfer exit.

It's almost over: Liverpool outcast Mario Balotelli has completed his medical,  and it looks like the 'fearsome' Italian is now officially an AC Milan player.

On Sunday, Milan CEO Adriano Galliani confirmed that Milan had held 'talks with Liverpool' about a 'loan with a portion of wages paid by us and another portion by Liverpool'.

Well, it appears that the talks went well as Balotelli has completed his medical at Milan.

On Tuesday, Milan posted the following photo on the club's official twitter feed:

According to the BBC:

"Balotelli is taking a pay cut to move back to Milan".

After completing his medical, Balotelli - who cost Liverpool £16m - told reporters:

"I always had Milan in my heart and always had hope that I would return one day. I just have to start to work and have a good year. I'm looking forward to training and proving my worth".

I still maintain that Brendan Rodgers is the main reason that Balotelli failed at Liverpool, and it seems that quite a few fans also feel the same. Indeed, I conducted a poll over the weekend asking fans underperformance at Anfield. The results:

Jamie Carragher certainly won't be losing any sleep over Balotelli's exit. When asked about the striker on Sky's Monday Night Football, he scathed:

"The Balotelli signing was a major mistake. I still can’t believe Rodgers signed him [and] he’s kidding some coaches if he’s got another move this time to AC Milan. Where’s the evidence of his quality?"

I'm a huge fan of Carra, but this comment is disappointingly unprofessional, and lacks any semblance of objectivity. The 'evidence' of Balotelli's quality is obvious:

* Prior to Liverpool: 124 goals/assists in 220 games (Goal/assist every 1.7 games)

* 13 goals in 33 games for the Italy national team.

* Bar Sturridge, Balotelli has a better career record (all competitions) than every Liverpool attacking player.

The question Carra should be asking is this: why did Balotelli suffered an 80% reduction in creative output under Rodgers (goal/assist every 7 games), when he's consistently contributed a goal/assist every 1.7 games for every other manager he's played under.

And as I've shown with cold, hard facts in previous articles, Balotelli is not the only one: Most attacking players under Rodgers have either regressed, or failed to maintain the form that attracted Liverpool in the first place.

This is particularly true of Rickie Lambert, who grabbed 183 goals/assists in 229 games at Southampton, but then - like Balotelli - suffered an 80% regression under Rodgers.

Like many fans, though, Carra has simply jumped on the anti-Balotelli bandwagon, and failed to fairly or objectively consider the reality and context of the situation.

Balotelli must also take some personal responsibility, but the prevailing view seems to be that he alone is the reason things went sour at Anfield, and that just isn't true in the slightest.

I personally wish Balotelli all the best - much to the chagrin of the baying media, he behaved well at Liverpool, and if Rodgers had shown any faith in him at all, I'm sure he would've scored/created more goals for the club.

Author: Jaimie K


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