Mario Balotelli .

Mario Balotelli explains what he disliked about Liverpool

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Liverpool took an enormous gamble when they signed Mario Balotelli in 2014. Safe to say, it didn't pay off.

The maverick Italian was tasked with replacing Luis Suarez at Anfield, which would have been difficult enough for the most focused, committed of strikers.

The 27-year-old went on to score just once for the Reds before being palmed off - or sent on loan to - AC Milan.

Another dry spell followed, prompting him to move to Nice. Whisper it quietly, but he's been excelling in France, scoring eight goals in 11 games in all competitions.

Whatever you say about the quality of Ligue 1, or lack thereof, it's good to see Balotelli getting back to his best.

The former Manchester City man looked like he had bags of potential as a youngster and it's never nice to see a player squander that kind of talent.

Plus, he's always been rather entertaining, setting off fireworks in his own home, or unveiling his 'Why Always Me?" top in the Manchester derby.

However, there's a solid argument that his time at Liverpool was the lowest point of his career.

Where did it all go wrong? 

Balotelli has now given some explanation as to why in an interview with Nice Matin, quoted via JOE.

"I will never go back to Liverpool," he said.

"The fans are wonderful, but the leadership team is a real disaster.

"I was living in a difficult situation in Liverpool, in a city I didn’t like. I needed change after two failed seasons between Liverpool and AC Milan.

Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League

"The French media is not as harsh as Italy's from the footballing point of view - or the English media when it comes to your private life.

"The stories about me going out all the time were untrue. When I was 19 I'd go out once or twice a month - nothing unusual for my age - yet I always ended up in the papers the next day."

Who is he talking about when he criticises the "leadership" - Jurgen Klopp, perhaps? Or Fenway Sports Group? If it's the latter, there are probably more than a few Liverpool fans who would sympathise with him.

Fortunately for Balo, he's unlikely to be offered the chance to return to Merseyside anytime soon. If he continues to shine with Nice, though, it's far from out of the question that we'll be seeing him at next year's World Cup.

Why did Balotelli flop at Liverpool? Have your say in the comments. 

Mario Balotelli
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