John Giles: Liverpool in a world of trouble with Mario Balotelli
Published 27/08/2014 | 20:17
John Giles has dismissed the idea that Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers helped reform Luis Suarez and believes he has his work cut out to ensure Mario Balotelli is a success at Anfield.
The controversial striker arrives on Merseyside with Rodgers adamant that a certain level of behaviour is expected from all his players following a string off off-pitch incidents which have plagued his career.
However in his column in The Herald today, the former Ireland player and manager believes lessons should be learned from Luis Suarez, where Rodgers was of the opinion that the club helped the Uruguayan transform his career before leaving for Barcelona this summer.
"Far from being "cured", the patient was just building up to relapse and on the biggest stage of all," he wrote.
"Worse than that, all the caring and kindness Rodgers had heaped on his man was repaid by Suarez signing on the dotted line for Barcelona as quickly as he could."
Mario Balotelli will not respond if he is treated as a project by Brendan Rodgers
Giles is adamant that a dangerous precedent has been set and the former Manchester City striker will have noted how Suarez was treated during his time at Anfield.
"All Balotelli has to do is take a look at what Suarez got up to and if he uses that as his model, Rodgers is in a world of trouble."
"If Rodgers was so keen to uphold the standards he preaches he wouldn't sign a player with such a reputation."
Rather than make Balotelli "a better person", Giles belives it is more likely to end in tears for the Reds.
"He (Rodgers) will have godlike powers if he can turn Balotelli into a productive, committed footballer and keep the rest of his players happy at the same time," he added.
See the full column at The Hearld.