It would appear as if Liverpool flushed £16 million down the toilet when they signed Mario Balotelli from A.C. Milan, and should have seen the writing on the wall after club president Silvio Berlusconi told Italian sports daily La Gazzetta dello Sport: “I remember he was bought against my advice.

“[Now] We have many champions: [Jeremy] Menez, [Keisuke] Honda, [Stephan] El Shaarawy, [Fernando] Torres, [Nigel] De Jong.

“The base is there. And we no longer have a rotten apple in the dressing room.”

Well the rotten apple may be finished at Liverpool as well with reports claiming Balotelli was no longer training with the first team, and that he has been left out of this weekend’s friendly with Helsinki.

Meanwhile two Serie A sides are said to be interested in the Italian striker, but neither will be willing to give Liverpool the vast amount of their money back, or agree to pay Balotelli the £100,000 per-week he earns on Merseyside.