Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti has backed Liverpool’s signing of striker Mario Balotelli despite his current struggles at Anfield.
The Italian international joined the Reds this summer for a £16 million fee from Serie A outfit AC Milan towards the end of the summer transfer window.
His arrival on Merseyside was met with scepticism by a number of observers who felt he was the wrong choice to replace 31-goal former Kop hero Luis Suarez.
The Uruguayan was the figurehead of the Reds’ phenomenal Premier League campaign last season and his creativity and killer instincts in the final third were as good as any in world football.
Balotelli, however, has yet to reach anywhere near those sorts of heights as another blank against Queens Park Rangers took his goalless Premier League run to six games.
Replacing Suarez was an almost impossible task from day one for Balotelli, but Madrid boss Ancelotti still feels his Italian compatriot has what it takes to make a success of himself on Merseyside.
“A player who scored so many goals is difficult to replace. But I believe after Luis Suarez’s departure the signing of Mario Balotelli was the correct one.” He said, quoted by the Spanish newspaper AS.
“He is a player who I like. It’s true that he hasn’t yet accomplished what was expected and I truthfully don’t know why. Maybe he needs more continuity and to find an environment that will help achieve that.”
Balotelli’s only goal of the season to date came in the 2-1 Champions League victory over plucky Bulgarian outfit Ludogorets Razgrad.
Next up for the Reds is Champions League holders Real Madrid on Wednesday and it will give the 24-year-old a big opportunity to prove his worth and repay the faith showed in him.