Stamford Bridge

Next Game

Chelsea v Liverpool

Tuesday, 27 January 2015, 19:45

Capital One Cup Semi-Final

Anfield

Last Game

Liverpool 0 - 0 Bolton

Saturday, 24 January 2015, 17:30

The FA Cup Fourth Round

Rodgers has faith in Balotelli

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers says Mario Balotelli will give Liverpool a lift but admitted his side need to improve after their 3-1 defeat at Manchester City.

Last Updated: 26/08/14 at 12:10 Post Comment

Brendan Rodgers: Happy with the arrival of Balotelli

Brendan Rodgers: Happy with the arrival of Balotelli

The Reds came into the Monday Night Football clash with City on the back of an unconvincing home victory over Southampton on the opening weekend, and their display at the Etihad was similarly disappointing.

The news of Balotelli's arrival will provide a welcome lift to the Merseysiders and Rodgers believes, despite his past misdemeanours, the enigmatic Italian can be a big hit at Anfield.

"All my life, I have given players an opportunity," Rodgers told Sky Sports.

"He (Balotelli) is 24 years of age, and has become a father now.

"He knows he has responsibility, not only to himself but to this great club.

"We will treat him no differently. He is part of our team.

"The market was very limited as to what we could bring in. The business was very good for us."

Liverpool will be the fifth club that Balotelli has played for and Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville says top teams will not want him if he fails to live up to his potential at Anfield.

“When he starts games, his goal ratio has been pretty good,” he told Monday Night Football.

“They are getting a goalscorer. They needed somebody else up there with Daniel Sturridge. They can’t compete on all levels and not have another presence.

“I have to say he played at City, who were the champions of England at the time, AC Milan is a great club and he played for Italy and the demands that Cesare Prandelli put on him. He has played under pressure in the last few years.

“This is his last chance at what you would call a big club and he has got to deliver.”

Fellow pundit Jamie Carragher believes Rodgers is taking a risk with Balotelli.

"Looking at the situation Liverpool were in, one week until the window shuts, they needed a striker and they're getting the Italian number one striker for £16million," he told Sky Sports.

"I think it is good business from Liverpool but there has got to be a worry signing Balotelli .

"There's a reason he costs £16million and has moved so often within his career already. That is a problem for Liverpool.

"If we could see the Balotelli we saw at Euro 2012 I'd say 'It's a great signing' but I don't want to see the Balotelli I saw at City in a Liverpool shirt: petulant, stupid, sendings-off, walking about.

"I played against him two or three times (and he was) doing nothing in the game and you knew if you got tight to him and put him under pressure he'd fall out again."

Reflecting on the Premier League loss at the Etihad, Rodgers felt the timing of City's opener was crucial, with Liverpool in the ascendancy.

"For the first 40 minutes, I thought we were the better team," Rodgers added.

"But we just switched off at the end of the half. 2-0 was then difficult for us. It killed us a little bit.

"Credit to the players, they kept going. We will get better as we go along.

"We needed to be a bit quicker in our actions, in the final third... a bit more dynamic."

The former Swansea boss also revealed the extent of the late injuries to Glen Johnson and debutant Alberto Moreno. 

"Glen looks like he has pulled his thigh. We will assess that tomorrow," Rodgers added.

"Moreno has twisted his ankle on the astroturf."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

F

irst Townsend, now Chiles. What next ITV? Comedy that you can actually watch without vomiting up your own spleen? I'll be sad to see Matt Smith go though. I actually quite like him. Plus, he was good in Doctor Who.

sailingmagpie
Adrian Chiles to leave ITV

H

e's like Jay from Inbetweeners. Could've had him, had him, didn't want him, turned him down.

lee
Wenger criticises work permits

A

wful, awful pundit. He was crap on BBC, and offered a little more analysis than Robbie Savage - apart from the delivery of banality in a sexy accent. Also, as I'm Irish he'll never be more then a slimy, hand-balling f**ker in my eyes.

batdog
Football People On TV: Thierry Henry

Footer 365

Chelsea: Mourinho gives flops silent treatment

Jose Mourinho was so disappointed by Chelsea's defeat to League One Bradford that he dished out the silent treatment.

Sepp Blatter shrugs-off UEFA's challenge to his leadership as 'lacking courage'

Sepp Blatter tells UEFA “they do not have the courage” to sufficiently challenge his leadership at this year's election.

Transfer news: Sam Allardyce unsure whether Darren Fletcher will join West Ham

Manager Sam Allardyce admits he is unsure whether Darren Fletcher will choose to join West Ham or another club.

Mail Box

Appalling, Slow, Pathetic, Embarrassing

It's a bonus Saturday Mailbox, with plenty of reaction to the most alarming 0-0 draw in Manchester United's recent history. At what point do we worry about Louis van Gaal?

Why Do Man United Look So Impotent?

It's all very well talking about formations and United's defensive problems, but shouldn't their expensive attacking options be doing better? And we talk psychology...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company