Reports have surfaced over the course of the day that Liverpool have agreed a £16m fee with AC Milan for their 24 year-old striker Mario Balotelli.
The Daily Mail claims the temperamental Italy international has been offered a £90,000 per week deal. Nice work if you can get it. I just hope he gets his 25 days’ holiday and company pension thrown in as well. Maybe even a company car if the tax allows.
Should the deal go through, two questions come to mind. The first: Is Balotelli a suitable replacement for a Uruguayan who’s name escapes me? Personally I’d say “Yes”. There’s no doubt the (potentially) soon to be ex-AC Milan Striker is nowhere near as prolific as the Uruguayan. However, although he doesn’t score as many goals, he does score important goals. A good characteristic for a team wishing to claim the Premiership Title for the first time in 26 years, and for this, I think he’s worth the money – especially when you consider the £25m Liverpool reportedly paid for Adam Lallana.
And secondly: Will the boy knuckle down and behave himself? If there’s any possibility of that, then I believe Brendan Rodgers is the man to do it. He’s shown with Luis Suarez (yes, that’s him!) that he can develop a personal relationship with his players that breeds trust and confidence, probably two of the most important ingredients in man management. I’d even go so far as to say he’ll do a better job than the former Manchester City Manager and Balotelli’s last English Boss, Roberto Mancini. “That’s not hard” you say? Well you’re probably right but it’s still an important point.
Balotelli is quoted as saying “This is my last day at Milanello”. So one could be forgiven for thinking the deal is done subject to a medical. Hopefully he’ll do better than Loic Remy and this deal will be completed. Also, hopefully, his registration will go better than Alberto Moreno’s and he’ll be eligible to face his old employers come Monday night when Liverpool travel to the Etihad Stadium for their next game.
All things considered, I’m happier now than I was this time last week when Liverpool only had Daniel Sturridge as a proper striker other than Rickie Lambert, who even David Blaine couldn’t make us believe was a replacement for Suarez. Roll on Monday. This season ahead looks just that little bit better.
Follow me on Twitter: @Mrbengreen