Manager Brendan Rodgers and Liverpool F.C. were not able to keep Luis Suarez at Anfield, but they’ve replaced him with another world-class striker in Mario Barwuah Balotelli. Super Mario is saying his goodbyes to his A.C. Milan teammates as the acceptance of a £16 million ($26.5 million) transfer fee stands in the way of his triumphant return to the Premier league.
With Suarez now with Barcelona, Liverpool used the £65 million pounds they received from that transfer wisely in replacing him with another fast, physical striker in Mario Balotelli; and at a bit of a bargain at that. In the exchange between the two players, what Liverpool will not be losing out on is the temper. Balotelli has an infamously short fuse, often finding his way into a booking for silly reasons, while Suarez has bitten opposing players on three separate occasions including at this year’s World Cup.
Suarez is the reigning Premier League Player of the Year, scoring 31 goals in 33 games. Although he will be suspended from official matches until October, Rodgers tried his best to keep his top goal scorer at Liverpool as he nearly helped the Reds see their first Premier League title since 1990. When Suarez finally jumped ship, the disposable income obtained by Liverpool allowed them to keep up in the arms race with the rest of the Premier League. With an already top-notch group of attack-minded players such as Daniel Sturridge, Steven Gerrard and Raheem Sterling, a goal-hungry striker to fill the void was the only piece of the puzzle left to fill; they now have that striker in Balotelli.
Minus the price tag, Balotelli and Suarez are almost identical strikers capable of filling any team’s goal-scoring needs, especially in the English Premier League, the toughest soccer league on the planet. Although this could be the 25th consecutive year which Liverpool will miss out on a Premier League championship, Balotelli offers a glimmer of hope to break the quarter century-long cold streak.