Much-maligned Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli has signed for French Ligue 1 club OGC Nice.
Mario Balotelli Joins Nice
It was initially thought that the deal would only be on a season-long loan. The club released a statement through their official website that the former Italy international has been allowed to leave on a free transfer. Balotelli scored only four goals in 28 appearances.
Originally signed from AC Milan for a fee of £16 million, then-Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers described the move as a calculated gamble, but it was not a move that would prove fruitful for either party.
After scoring only one goal in 16 league appearances for the Reds in the 2014/15 campaign, he returned to AC Milan on loan the following season. He managed just one league goal in 20 appearances.
Upon returning to Melwood for preseason training, Jurgen Klopp made it clear that the Italian was not a part of his plans. He was quoted as saying “there will be a club around who would be happy to have new Mario Balotelli. I have spoken clearly to the player about that.” (The Telegraph)
Departures for Wisdom, Alberto
Andre Wisdom and Luis Alberto joining Balotelli on the list of Liverpool departures. They are off to Red Bull Salzburg and Lazio respectively.
Wisdom was linked with a reunion with former manager Brendan Rodgers at Celtic earlier in the window. However, the Austrian outfit have since completed a move for the 23 year-old defender. Wisdom is able to play at centre back as well as right back. He has previously had loan spells at Derby County, West Brom and most recently, Norwich City.
Luis Alberto completes his switch to Lazio for an initial fee worth £4.3m, with a further £1.7m in add-ons. Alberto originally signed for Liverpool for £6.8m. He joined Malaga and Deportivo on loan spells during that time.