Arsenal legend: Liverpool should give Borini a chance over Balotelli

Former Arsenal and England striker Ian Wright believes Fabio Borini could offer Liverpool something if given a chance to impress over the misfiring Mario Balotelli.

Arsenal legend and now-pundit Ian Wright believes out-of-favour Liverpool striker Fabio Borini deserves a run in the first-team over the misfiring Mario Balotelli.

After scoring seven goals in 32 Premier League games on loan at Sunderland last season, Borini rejected a permanent switch to the north east over the summer, as well as an approach from Queens Park Rangers, in order to fight for his place in Brendan Rodgers’ lineup.

The Italian international has made just one start in three appearances since, however, and has been linked with a winter return to Serie A in recent weeks, with both Inter Milan and Fiorentina expressing interest in his signature.

 2014-15 Premier League TeamPosGoalsTotal ShotShot AccBig Chance Missed AssistsKey PassTotal PassPass AccAppsMins
Mario Balotelli Liverpool FW 0 30 30% 4 0 5 104 72.12% 6 426
Rickie Lambert Liverpool FW 0 4 50% 3 0 0 45 75.56% 6 125
Fabio Borini Liverpool FW 0 3 66.67% 0 0 1 27 62.96% 2 94

Balotelli, meanwhile, has netted just once in nine games since a £16 million move from AC Milan in August, failing to impress when leading the line in Daniel Sturridge’s absence, and Wright believes his poor form should dictate that both Borini and fellow front man Rickie Lambert be given a chance to prove their worth.

‘If I was Borini, coming off what I’d be done last season at Sunderland, scoring some important goals, I’d be starting to ask questions,’ he told BBC Radio 5 Live.

‘I’d be saying, “Hang on a minute, this fella’s had a few opportunities now and not only is he not playing well but he’s missing chances as well. I’m waiting for my chance, when am I going to get it?”

‘Lambert the same. People give him a bit of stick but I’d like to see him get the same amount of chances. Yes, Balotelli cost £16 million, but at some stage you’ve got to let him show what he can do.

‘I feel that Balotelli’s had enough chances now and there are players waiting who are chomping at the bit, and I think Borini might be one of them.’

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