Brendan Rodgers thinks ex-Liverpool player can still become one of the world's best

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Mario Balotelli confirmed what most had already assumed when he ranked all of the managers he has worked with earlier this week.

Unsurprisingly, the Italian was fairly critical of the man who brought him to Liverpool, Brendan Rodgers, and judged the current Celtic boss to be the worst coach he has played under.

“In truth, I had the biggest disappointment with Rodgers. I enjoyed myself with him in training but our relationship was a disaster,” he said, via The Mirror.

Despite his failings at Anfield, Rodgers has always been regarded as one of the more honest talking managers around.

And he has lived up to that reputation again with a refreshing assessment of his difficult relationship with Balotelli.

In an interview with talkSPORT, Rodgers accepted that his old striker might have actually had a point.

"He was probably absolutely spot on," he said, as per The Metro.

"I just couldn’t really connect with Mario.

"He was one that came in very late in the window. It was a gamble taken from a club perspective.

"It was one where, he’s a big talent, he’ll come in and develop, he’s got all the tools.

"In all fairness, I just found it very difficult to connect with Mario.

"On the field, he tried his best. But yeah, it certainly wasn’t something that worked out as everyone would like."

Since swapping Anfield for Nice last summer, Balotelli has revived his career with a stunning start to life in Ligue 1.

Seven goals already this season have prompted suggestions the 26-year-old is somewhere close to his very best form and all of the hype surrounding the once highly rated teenager might now be coming to fruition.

Rodgers has backed Balotelli to continue his strong start and thinks he could still fulfil his potential to become one of the best players in the world.

"If you sit with him in the office, the guy’s a good fella, a good guy," Rodgers added.

"If he could ever match that intensity with his talent, then he’d be one of the best players in the world.

"On the field, it was something that never worked out. That season was difficult for us.

"But now I hope he’s got a club, that might be a final chance over in France. But hopefully, it can work out for him."

The Celtic boss often gets a fair amount of stick but you've got to admire how positively he can speak about someone he so clearly didn't get on with.

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Brendan Rodgers
Celtic FC
Premier League
Mario Balotelli
UEFA Champions League

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