Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has admitted that he has taken a huge risk in signing striker Mario Balotelli, and that he needs the forward to prove to him that he was worth the gamble in the near future, as reported by the Daily Express.
The former AC Milan forward has been disappointing since joining the Anfield club, and has only scored one goal, which came against Ludogorets in the Champions League.
There has also been criticism of his work ethic, with many comparing him unfavourably to former Reds striker Luis Suarez, who was famed for his incredible stamina and effort while up front.
The Italy international was brought into the club for £16 million, with many doubting his ability to fit into Rodgers’s preferred system.
The Liverpool boss has now admitted that he took a calculated risk with the player, and believes he needs to offer a greater contribution to the side going forward.
He said: “I always said it was about availability and affordability of players.
“Mario was the one right at the very end who was available for that.
“I said when he came in that it was a calculated risk and it’s something I have to work on to try to make it work for the team.
“Any striker, not just him, is judged on his goals and the number of assists you make. At this moment he has not hit the numbers he will have wanted.”