Today has the feeling of the last chance saloon about if for Mario Balotelli, who has been handed his first Liverpool start since our Europa League match with Besiktas in mid-February.
The match in Istanbul was also the only time since November that Balotelli had completed a full game without being substituted, making it all the more intriguing a selection from Brendan Rodgers today.
Rodgers is clearly going all out for victory at the Hawthorns today, knowing that anything other than a win will likely bring our top four hopes to an end.
Indeed, many Liverpool fans have voiced their pleasure that Balotelli, Raheem Sterling, Philippe Coutinho and Jordon Ibe will all start together – it’s the sort of attacking selection that we became synonymous for last season.
As for Balotelli, he’ll be desperate to add to his sparse tally of five Liverpool goals so far this season and build on his relatively impressive performance against Aston Villa at Wembley last weekend, when he had a late equaliser incorrectly ruled out for offside.
Here’s how Twitter reacted…
Balotelli starts? Finally…. Mario
— Nay Thomo (@nathanthompson_) April 25, 2015
Gerrard recalled to the starting XI, and Balotelli given a shot up top on his own. Exciting and promising starting XI.
— Rodgerholic (@Rodgerholic) April 25, 2015
Balotelli starts for a Liverpool, now that they're not going to get To get VL Football I want Balotelli to score goals for them
— Libaan (@Libaan_E10) April 25, 2015
Balotelli beast mode
— Thibaut Courtois (@AmsyarTreizer13) April 25, 2015
Looks like 3-4-2-1 for #LFC today with Johnson left wing-back and Ibe on the right. Coutinho and Sterling behind Balotelli.
— James Pearce (@JamesPearceEcho) April 25, 2015
— Matthew Ryan West (@xMattyxWestx) April 25, 2015
Balotelli doesn't play fans moan, he starts and they moan, not sure what some want! Without Sturridge why not give him a go.
— Tim Betts (@bettsyt) April 25, 2015
Someone tell Balotelli it's a charity match !!
— Thomas Duncan (@astmduncan) April 25, 2015
— talisker donahue (@taldonahue) April 25, 2015