Mario Balotelli is the perfect signing for Liverpool

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Football News

Amid confirmations that Mario Balotelli may be set to complete a move to Anfield after a fee was agreed between Milan and Liverpool, the question now arises of the suitability of the Italian for Liverpool and vice-versa.

Balotelli is a man who divides opinion as much as Liverpool's last controversial striker, Luis Suarez, and there will be some debate in the coming days as to whether or not the enigmatic Italian is worth the energy.

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Balotelli: Perfect fit for Liverpool?

On his day, Balotelli is a world-class striker, but he has of course had his problems both on and off the pitch. Discipline problems at Manchester City resulted in him being shipped back to Italy in 2013 to Milan, where he has remained ever since. At 24, Rodgers will be hoping the Italian has matured enough to be integrated into his team orientated philosophy.

Liverpool remain in need of a striker and at a reported £16 million, Balotelli could well be the perfect fit.

He is fast, strong and a good height for a centre-forward. What might be more important, however, is the fact that, like the now departed Luis Suarez, he has the ability to take a game by the scruff of the neck and win it almost completely on his own, as he showed for Italy in the Euro 2012 semi-final against world champions in waiting Germany.

He scored 30 goals in 54 appearance for Milan playing in the notoriously defensive Italian league, cementing his reputation as a pre-eminent goalscorer.

Balotelli may have less pressure at Liverpool

Yes, he has had his problems, but he is not being brought in to be Liverpool's main striker, upon whom they pin their top four and potential title hopes he is being bought to compete with the already established Daniel Sturridge and hopefully push Liverpool to new heights in their squad depth. Balotelli's flair for the spectacular may just provide the final spark they need to push for honours this term.

The question remains however, even if he is not the main striker, of whether the pros outweigh the cons of this prolifically talented striker.

Can Rodgers tame Balotelli?

Both Jose Mourinho and Roberto Mancini have famously failed to tame him in the past. Rodgers, however, has a slight advantage in that he is an excellent man manager and has already lived through a similar situation in dealing with the mercurial talent of Suarez.

This will be another tricky assignment for Rodgers and resident Liverpool psychiatrist Steve Peters but they have both proved their skill in handling so-called 'difficult' players before, as much with Sturridge and Sterling as Suarez.

And if they can continue that run and help Balotelli to get past his demons, Liverpool will have some player on their hands, who will be more than worth the efforts put into bringing the best out of him.

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Mario Balotelli
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