In one way, Mario Balotelli to Liverpool made perfect sense. He scored 19 league goals last season, has Premier League experience and was on the market for just £16million as AC Milan hurried to sell him on.
But after the turbulence of Suarez what they did not need was the tragedy of Balotelli. Where the Uruguayan was tenacious and terrific, the Italian has been sluggish and unsensational. The move, in reality, has never made sense.
Bad boy Balotelli
Despite being a shining light in an otherwise dreadful campaign for Milan last term, the Italian giants were keen to offload him given his reputation as a troublemaker and cancer within the dressing room.
What Filippo Inzaghi realised and Brendan Rodgers did not was that this is a character impossible to tame. Goals cannot always compensate for poor attitude and laziness. Even Roberto Mancini, a man described in Sergio Aguero's biography as "like a father," to him, cut his time at City short after realising the scale of the task on his hands.
Suarez was trouble, but he was worth it. Supporting somebody of his nature is only excusable when the goals and levels of effort outweigh the dark side to his game. In his case, he was a battle worth fighting.
But mad Mario is not. One solitary goal against Bulgarian minnows Ludogrets aside, his Anfield tale has been one of mediocrity and misery. Suarez scored 31 times in the league last season, but Balotelli is yet to break his duck. The pair may have a thirst for the outrageous, but in terms of footballing ability they are on conflicting ends of the spectrum.
The decision to take a punt on a player so opposite of everything the club values. The responsibility ultimately lies with Rodgers, whose summer signings are yet to make the impact the Northern Irishman would of been hoping for.
Balotelli is the poster of his manager's current difficulties but the likes of Adam Lallana, Lazar Markovic and Ricky Lambert have been similarly insipid. With £75million thrust into their pockets by Barcelona for Suarez, the Liverpool fans have a right to be irked by the plight of this term.
Pressure is beginning to mount and the struggles of Jurgen Klopp at Borussia Dortmund have ensured the German's shadow is beginning to loom large. Maybe a man of his charisma is what is needed in order to tell the big bad wolf just what playing at Anfield really means.
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