Liverpool legends debate Balotelli future - 'Does he have the brain for it?'

Former Anfield favourites appear conflicted with what Brendan Rodgers should do with the striker.

It isn't just fans that have been deliberating Mario Balotelli's future at Anfield, though of course that has been a popular subject for all that hold an interest in Liverpool Football Club, the Reds many legendary players have also been offering their thoughts on the divisive forward.

Fresh from both Jamie Carragher and Jamie Redknapp questioning the sense of signing the 24-year-old, with the former Anfield defender stating his belief that Balotelli will be gone by the start of next season, two other Liverpool heroes have come out in support of the attacker, one of whom is Liverpool's greatest ever goalscorer.

No one knows what it takes to be a leading striker at Liverpool more than Ian Rush, who scored 346 goals for the Merseyside club during his career, so it is some show of support for the Welshman to claim the Italian can still be a success.

“He still has a future at Liverpool, said Rush. "The fans are really, really patient, they just want to see him give 100% But he has to learn he's at Liverpool Football Club, not just any other club, and he has to give 100% every time he's on the pitch.

“He’s got to show his commitment to the club by proving it on the pitch.”

Istanbul hero Dietmar Hamann was even more supportive of the attacker, writing on Twitter that Balotelli needs support more than criticism.

One former Liverpool star who didn't think Balotelli could make a success of his Liverpool career was Graeme Souness, who questioned whether the player has the right enthusiasm and footballing insight to make it.

"The criticism is for him not showing any enthusiasm," Souness told Press Association Sport.

"He must do all the training all the other boys do and he looks physically fit and powerful so I am just wondering if he doesn't have a football brain.

"He is just not seeing the picture of when he should be running in behind centre-halves or when he should be running towards the ball.

"I don't know whether he has any brain to make the right decision.

"You never watch Mario Balotelli and think 'Wow, he's put a real stint in'."

Regardless of what anyone thinks, the former Manchester City and Milan striker has until the end of the season to turn this negative opinion of him around and justify the support that comes his way. And with Balotelli, good or bad, you just never know what he's going to do next.

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