It’s been a pretty decent summer, all in all, for football agent Mino Raiola.
According to Spanish newspaper AS, the Italian-born Dutch agent earned a remarkable €31 million during the summer transfer window thanks to the mega-money deals that took Paul Pogba, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Henrikh Mkhitaryan all to Manchester United.
And Raiola added a few more euros to his bank balance with Mario Balotelli’s deadline-day free transfer from Liverpool to Nice on Wednesday.
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However, the minted 48-year-old hasn’t allowed Balotelli to leave Anfield without hitting out at Jurgen Klopp’s treatment of his client first.
Raiola has accused Klopp of acting like a “piece of s***” towards Balotelli, who was forced to train with the Reds’ reserves prior to his unceremonious departure.
Raiola hits out at Klopp
"In the end, the higher-ups at Liverpool admitted that Klopp was wrong [to send Balotelli to train with the reserves],” the agent told Gazzetta dello Sport, per Goal.
“I'm not trying to judge him as a coach - although, for me, he's not a good coach - but he didn't understand that Balotelli is, whatever else, a person.
"Mario has been exemplary. He never complained about training alone. To say that it was wrong of Klopp would be an understatement; he was a piece of s*** about it.”
Neither Klopp nor Rodgers wanted Mario
Klopp never fancied Balotelli and neither did his processor, Brendan Rodgers, who admitted earlier this year that Liverpool’s owners decided to spend £16 million on the controversial former Manchester City star.
Balotelli scored a pitiful one Premier League goal for the Merseyside outfit before being loaned back to AC Milan, where he continued to struggle.
Raiola backs Balotelli to shine at Nice
However, Raiola is confident that Balotelli - with the trust of the club’s manager Lucien Favre - will prove to be a fantastic signing for the Ligue 1 side.
"It's normal to consider him a risk for Nice because he has not met expectations over the last two seasons,” the agent added. “From that point of view, it's a gamble, but I'd always take that gamble.
“If you're lucky, you win the league. If it goes well, you're in the top five. If it goes wrong, oh well.
"Whoever has the TV rights to Ligue 1 should give a bonus to Nice. Without Ibra, this league has lost at least 50 per cent of its value.
“With Mario, it recovers at least 30% because he is a talented star, hoping that this year it finally comes good. If he stays fit, he'll score 20 goals."
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