AC Milan boss Sinisa Mihajilovic is unhappy with on-loan Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli’s work rate during the recent 2-1 victory over Genoa, and the manager has revealed that the striker may not be awarded any game time at the club.
The Italian forward was introduced as a substitute for Carlos Bacca with just two minutes remaining against Genoa, and in that time Genoa pulled a goal back. Milan, who were already leading Genoa 2-0, managed to hold on and won the match 2-1.
Although Milan won 2-1, Balotelli was under intense criticism after coming on the pitch just moment before everything started going wrong for the home team. Mihajlovic insists it was not just Balotelli’s work-rate which angered him, but the forward was certainly on his mind.
“We should’ve scored a third goal and not risked at the end,” he said.
“It is also my fault, as those who don’t sacrifice themselves for the team to the 94th minute will no longer set foot on the field. It wasn’t just Balotelli, there were another two or three as well as him, and they know who I’m talking about.”
From what seemed to be Balotelli’s last match for the Italian giants, the Mihajlovic moved to indicate that Balotelli will only be in his plans if the player improves.
“Where can we improve? There are many areas, as when Balotelli and Jeremy Menez are fit we will have more attacking options and it’ll be more difficult for the opposition to close us down,” Mihajlovic added.
Balotelli, who is reportedly on a wage of £125,000-per-week at Anfield, has failed to impress on his loan spell and he is unlikely to remain on the fringes next season.
Liverpool hero Dietmar Hamann understands Jurgen Klopp will not tolerate Balotelli when he returns to Anfield in the summer.
“There’s every chance Klopp will say, ‘come back to Liverpool and I’ll have a look at you, but if you do one thing you’re out the door or training with the kids’,” Hamann told talkSPORT.
“I wouldn’t put that past him, but Jurgen Klopp is a clever man and he won’t waste his time with Balotelli. Many Manchester City fans are very fond of Balotelli because he did score goals there, but the guy is trouble. A lot of managers have tried with him but none have succeeded.
“Roberto Mancini [who has coached the striker at City and at Inter Milan] is like a stepdad to Balotelli, yet he still had a punch-up with him!”
The Italian striker has only scored twice this season at AC Milan, and the Serie A outfit are reportedly planning to offload him in summer.