Jamie Redknapp has his say on Mario Balotelli’s controversial penalty

Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli hit the headlines on Thursday night.

Jamie Redknapp has told reporters for the Daily Mail that Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli lacks respect for both his teammates and coaching staff,

The controversial Italian striker hit the headlines on Thursday night after taking a late penalty against Besiktas despite captain Jordan Henderson being the designated taker.

His decision caused words to be exchanged between himself and striker Daniel Sturridge, and club captain Steven Gerrard cut a frustrated figure watching on from the studio.

Fortunately for the former Manchester City he scored and the Reds won 1-0, however that did not detract ensuing criticism and Sky Sports pundit Redknapp believes his actions mark a lack of respect.

“The problem with Mario is I don't think he has got a lot of respect for anybody,” Redknapp explained.

“He has worked with some of the best managers in Cesare Prandelli, Jose Mourinho, Roberto Mancini — everybody has tried with this man but nobody seems to get to the bottom of it.”

“The objective is to put the ball into the back of the net, thankfully that is what he did, but it is not nice to see players arguing like that on the field.”

“He is an incredibly confident penalty taker and very good at it, but it is that lack of respect that he has.”

Was Balotelli right to take the penalty?

Balotelli’s record at taking penalties is phenomenal, and if there is anybody you would want to confidently step up and dispatch a spot-kick it’s him.

However, the 24-year-old’s actions have sparked talk over a lack of respect and while that might be a bit far-fetched, overruling his own captain and staff is not good for morale in the camp.

He might be the best penalty taker at the club, or even in the Premier League, however that does not give him the right to take an authoritarianism type stance and such actions should be held accountable.

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