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

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

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."

TEAMtalk Facebook Fan Page

The TEAMtalk fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

still can't see the Phil Jones thing that some people go on about. Whenever I watch him play it's a repeat of headless chicken meets a gurning Bambi on ice for 90 minutes.

diabolicaldiaby
F365's Top Ten Defenders Of The Season

P

robably the first list I've come across in a long time where I agree with a large majority of what was written. Can't agree with everything though, Zaba has had an awful season by his standards, I'd put Monreal (a player who I've never rated) up there, gotta give credit where it's due, he's really stepped up his game.

scroteymcbooger
F365's Top Ten Defenders Of The Season

S

ome top analysis here..... UNITED WOULD BE TOP IF IT WEREN'T FOR ALL THEM GAMES THEY LOST

benvo81
United Progress Stifled By Bottom-Half Record

Footer 365

Brendan Rodgers says he will be a better manager at Liverpool next season

Brendan Rodgers believes he "will be a better manager" next season, and has criticised the "short-termism" that has threatened to dislodge him at Liverpool.

Jose Mourinho agrees new Chelsea deal, claim reports

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has verbally agreed a two-year extension to his contract, according to reports.

Swansea's Bafetimbi Gomis could return from injury against Arsenal

Swansea striker Bafetimbi Gomis could return to action against Arsenal after nearly a month on the sidelines.

Mail Box

Giroud Is More Than Good Enough...

Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott are integral to Arsenal's title hopes next season. There's also more on handballs, Juventus, and Ronaldo holding Bale back...

How Is Coutinho Rated Above Cazorla?

We have a mailbox packed full of views on Santi Cazorla, what Arsenal and United need this summer, the idiocy of St Totteringham's Day and rather a lot more...

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