Liverpool legend: Mario Balotelli won't be allowed to rock the boat

Balotelli 2

Ex-Liverpool midfielder Jan Molby believes that Mario Balotelli won't upset the applecart at Anfield.

The Reds are on the verge on completing a shock move for the Italian striker, with reports suggesting that the AC Milan forward will join them for around £16 million.

Despite Balotelli's lengthy list of controversies, the fee is relatively low for an international striker who has won titles in England and Italy.

In a summer that has seen Shane Long move for £12m and Fabio Borini linked with a £14m switch to Sunderland, Balotelli represents something of a bargain.

However, the move is still something of a risk for Brendan Rodgers, and Molby, who played for the club from 1984-1996, believes that the Liverpool manager won't stand for the 24-year-old's histrionics.

The Dane told the Liverpool Echo: "Balotelli has always been an individual and gone down his own path – but that won’t be allowed to happen at Liverpool. He will be integrated into the group and expected to pull his weight in training and matches."

The Dane likened the deal to the one that brought Daniel Sturridge to Anfield for £12m back in January 2013, but Molby admitted that Balotelli's behavioral issues far outweigh any problems that may have surrounded the England international prior to his move to Merseyside.

"Brendan Rodgers will play a huge part in this and no manager in Balotelli’s career will spend as much time with him as the Liverpool boss will do," he added.

"Brendan brought Daniel Sturridge to the club when everybody warned him not to and has helped turn him into one of the Premier League’s most predatory strikers.

"Getting Balotelli to realise his potential on a consistent basis is, of course, a bigger challenge. Perhaps it is one of the biggest challenges he has ever faced but Rodgers will be excited to be working with someone as talented as Mario."

The move for Balotelli will bring Liverpool's spending up to around £117m and will round off the biggest summer spending spree in the club's history.

Luis Suarez's £75m switch to Barcelona has largely offset the huge outlay, but Rodgers has still managed to add some much-needed depth to a threadbare squad.

The five-time European Cup winners have signed Lazar Markovic, Adam Lallana, Rickie Lambert, Emre Can, Dejan Lovren, Javi Manquillo and Alberto Moreno, while Divock Origi will spend this season on loan with Lille.

Rodgers's men face an early test of their capabilities this season when they take on the champions, Manchester City, at the Etihad Stadium on Monday.

Register for LIVERPOOL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch