Mario Balotelli never seemed the right fit for Liverpool, but the controversial striker put his head down and worked hard. When things still didn’t work out in the end, it was disappointing but not especially unexpected, and it would have been churlish to place the blame for that failure on Balotelli.
Unfortunately for both the player and for Liverpool, a career that has seen Balotelli become as famous for his behaviour off the football field as for his largely unfulfilled potential on it, moving him on was always going to be difficult. In the end, only Nice proved willing.
Following a scramble to agree to terms with both the player and his now-former club on deadline day, one that saw the sides negotiating the deal up until the final hours and uncertainty over whether it would be a permanent or loan deal, Nice were able to announce his capture late this evening.
And it’s a move that for the player, at least according to Italian legend Gianluigi Buffon, is a humble one, one that shows Balotelli is determined to revive his career and prove the many naysayers wrong about him, with Buffon noting, “Balotelli made a humble choice. He can demonstrate he talent there.”
He may not be a Liverpool player any more, but hopefully, now that the deal is done, he can do just that and put the turmoil of his early years as a professional footballer and the disappointment of his times at Liverpool behind him for good.