Steven Gerrard gives his verdict on Mario Balotelli's Liverpool debut

The Reds skipper believes the Italian showed enough to suggest he will become a 'terrific player' for the Anfield side.

Steven Gerrard believes Mario Balotelli showed enough during his Liverpool debut to suggest he'll become a 'terrific player' for Brendan Rodgers' side.

The £16 million signing, who joined from AC Milan this month, failed to score on his debut for the Reds, although his side won 3-0 at Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.

But Gerrard believes Balotelli's strength and physicality in at Spurs, as well as his ability at holding up the ball, suggests he will succeed at Liverpool once he is fully match fit.

"With all due respect to Manchester City and AC Milan, Mario is going to get a different kind of support here," Gerrard told reporters.

"These are the best fans in the world and traditionally they always get behind our strikers. I've told him it's there for him. If he plays well and works hard for these supporters, they'll get behind him. He won't have experienced support like that he's about to get.

"He's a big, strong lad. He held it up terrifically well. All eyes were on him and I thought he was a terrific team player.

"He did a lot of ugly work for the team and showed some really good touches. You've got to remember that he's only had three lots of 45 minutes in pre-season, so with game time and getting used to the manager and players around him, he's going to be a terrific player for us."

Gerrard scored a penalty against Tottenham that made him the third-highest penalty scorer in Premier League history after Alan Shearer and Frank Lampard.

Next up for Liverpool is an Anfield clash with Aston Villa, where Gerrard, Balotelli and co will look to make it three wins out of four in the league this season.

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