Former Liverpool forward El-Hadji Diouf has waded into the discussion surrounding Mario Balotelli’s move away from Anfield to Nice, claiming the striker could never succeed at the club due to the presence of Steven Gerrard, whom he described as a “jealous” person.
The Italian forward headed away from Merseyside on a permanent basis during the summer after a disastrous 24 months, moving to Ligue 1 on a free transfer.
‘Balo’ marked his Nice debut with two goals in a 3-2 defeat to Marseille and since his switch to France, he’s hit out at Jamie Carragher on Twitter after negative comments from the Kop favourite.
— Mario Balotelli (@FinallyMario) September 3, 2016
And now the debate has continued to rumble on with Diouf having his say.
The Senegalese striker – widely seen as one of Liverpool’s worst signings of the Premier League era – believes Gerrard was one of the major factors behind Balotelli’s struggles at the club.
“I told him not to go to Liverpool. It wasn’t made for him, that things couldn’t go well with Gerrard, who has never had his talent and then said negative things about him.” He told L’Equipe.
“Gerrard is a jealous man who doesn’t like men of character. Mario is a good person that you should listen to. He’s not a guy who’s going to cause problems in the dressing room.
“There are a lot of things that have been made up about him. People tell tales about him, but they’re often a load of rubbish.”
Diouf has been very vocal in fielding his controversial opinions about Gerrard in past, claiming the MLS star and Carragher had a “bad mentality” while he was at Liverpool.