The Italian forward completed a move to Anfield on August 21, signing for a fee believed to be in the region of £16 million.
He was not the first choice signing wanted by Brendan Rodgers, with Loic Remy pulling out of a move to Liverpool after taking his medical, and the Frenchman went on to agree a deal with Premier League rivals Chelsea late in the transfer window.
The £8.5 million release clause in Remy’s contract seems remarkably low for a player of his quality, and, despite the small minutes under his belt at Stamford Bridge, he has undoubtedly started his career in West London in much better fashion that Balotelli has in Liverpool.
The nadir of the former Manchester City man’s career with the Reds came on Wednesday, when, having played a half of anonymous football against Real Madrid in the Champions League, he was substituted having swapped shirts with central defender Pepe.
With Daniel Sturridge out injured, and Balotelli shouldering the goalscoring pressure - due to the continuing absence of Rickie Lambert - the question should be asked of whether Liverpool made a mistake when they turned down Remy over the summer.
|Mins Played||Goals||Mins per Shot||Conversion Rate||Mins per Key Pass||Mins per Dribble|
The stats suggest that the Reds did choose the wrong forward when agreeing to sign Balotelli.
Despite being on the field of play for more than 100 minutes longer than Remy, the Italian has still yet to open his account, whilst the Chelsea man scored on his debut. Balotelli registers a shot every 14.2 minutes, but his dreadful run in front of goal has left him with a conversion rate of 0%. He has played more key passes than Remy, but has yet to register an assist, and he is less willing to take the initiative with the ball when the play appears to be stalling, completing just two dribbles - at a rate of one every 213 minutes.
Remy is unfortunate in that he is playing second fiddle to the Premier League’s leading goalscorer in Diego Costa, and, when given his chance in the Champions League, was forced off after 16 minutes due to injury. If he were with the Reds, he would undoubtedly be starting in the absence of Sturridge, and would prove viable competition for the Englishman’s position as first-choice striker.
It does not appear as if Balotelloi will be challenging Sturridge when the latter returns from injury, and the rumours that he may not be a Liverpool player next season may just come true.