How Can Liverpool Stimulate Complex Mario Balotelli?


There stands no proper excuse for a professional footballer such as Mario Balotelli to get away with some of his childish behaviours on an off the pitch – but maybe the media should ease off the Italian to see his true potential. Obviously when you are in the footballing world, attention and acclaim follow closely, especially in peculiar scenes such as the ones Mario has been involved in, but that takes away from his ability to build himself solely as a footballer and not a cult icon.

It is up until this point all Balotelli’s fault. From his sour stint at Inter Milan to his failed relationship with Roberto Mancini at Manchester City to his ghostly presence at AC Milan. At some point the pressure has to boil over, and at Liverpool, I believe Balotelli should be given the support he deserves until he pulls the fire alarm.

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We have to remember how Mario grew up; it reflects much of his footballing life. He was born from Ghanian immigrants who were forced to give him up for adoption, where he luckily ended up with a wonderful and wealthy Italian family, The Balotelli’s. But in the beginning, before his adoption became permanent he spent weekdays with his Italian family and weekends with his biological family. Although Mario today would only consider himself Italian through and through, Mario had been juggled most of his early life.

Jun 20, 2014; Recife, Pernambuco, BRAZIL; Costa Rica midfielder Yeltsin Tejeda (17) makes a sliding tackle on Italy forward Mario Balotelli (9) as Costa Rica defender Oscar Duarte (6) looks on during the first half of a 2014 World Cup game at Arena Pernambuco. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

This is exactly what has happened in his footballing career, and as time as gone on, his value has decreased immensely which not only the media but the footballing world makes very clear. During transfer windows it’s all about the numbers and the value – after being forced from club to club, you think Mario has the desire to hear the major decline in his own worth?

He has probably taken enough backlash from continuous racism from his beloved Italy to fall outs with coaches, but the numbers inevitably add to his burden. Also, the media fails to see that Mario probably has a much different and grave pressure on his back compared to other players. He is aware of his replacement, but he is also aware that he stands as a rebound not a replacement.

Again, this is not the excuse his petty mistakes that could have been easily avoided, but it should draw attention to the complex man Liverpool have at their forefront. In that sense, I believe Balotelli has found the perfect club to commit to, to build his character for and become who he truly is for. His arrival at Anfield has been nothing but welcoming, even if under the circumstances that perhaps he was a last resort.

Although Mario may have only scored his first goal in England just this week, up until the recent expressions of frustration from Liverpool fans, he was supported whole heartly. In that case it was his turn to play for someone other than himself and if Liverpool does what Andrea Pirlo suggests and nourishes the lost striker, he could potentially  be the best black sheep they ever bought.