Mario Balotelli may not have made an impact on the pitch for Liverpool, but it was impossible to ignore his presence at the club. The constant questions about his fit and Liverpool’s big-money gamble on the player, narratives about his personality and work rate, Vines of him ironing shirts.
He was always going to be an unavoidable presence, even if he didn’t make a difference. Today, that’s all at an end. At least for the time being, as he says farewell to Liverpool fans. He isn’t saying goodbye, though—even if it’s not because he expects to be back next summer if Milan choose not to make his move permanent.
Rather, he wants Liverpool fans to know that even if things didn’t work out for him at Anfield, he’ll be following the club and hoping they do well this season. It’s a nice sentiment from a player, now 25 years of age, who could easily have been far more bitter about having seemingly wasted another season.
"I’m grateful to Liverpool FC and Liverpool fans for the time and opportunities you gave me," said the striker in a statement on his Facebook page. "It’s not a goodbye but rather a farewell. I’ll be supporting you guys all the way in every competition… unless you face AC Milan."
Same to you, Mario.
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