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Mario Balotelli brands joining Liverpool ‘worst mistake of my life’


​Mario Balotelli has branded his decision to join Liverpool as ‘the worst mistake of my life’

Speaking before his Nice debut, in which he scored twice to help his new club to a 3-2 victory over Marseille, Balotelli hit out at both Brendan Rodgers and Jurgen Klopp.

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He told Canal+: “I joined Liverpool. It was the worst mistake of my life.

“Apart from the fans, who were fantastic with me, I must be honest, and the players, who I had a good rapport with, I didn’t like the club.

“I had two coaches, Brendan Rodgers and Jurgen Klopp. As people they didn’t make a good impression on me. I didn’t get along with them.”

The Italian opened his Nice account in only the seventh minute of his Ligue 1 bow, converting a penalty after being given a start by boss Lucien Favre.

He doubled his tally with 12 minutes remaining, turning home a right-wing cross from close range to make the score 2-2.

Earlier, on-loan Newcastle winger Florian Thauvin had levelled for Marseille, before ex-Swansea striker Bafetimbi Gomis scored a penalty of his own to make it 2-1.

Wylan Cyprien’s speculative effort squeezed past Yohann Pele in the Marseille goal in the dying minutes to win it for the hosts.

Balotelli was goaded by Gomis as he stepped up for the penalty, then stuttered in the run up before beating the goalkeeper low to his right and holding his arms out stretched in celebration.

The former Manchester City striker moved to Nice on a free transfer on deadline day after a dismal couple of years.

He netted just one Premier League goal during his time on Merseyside, and could only manage the same number during a 20-game Serie A loan spell with AC Milan last season.

Balotelli started up front with youngster Alassane Plea as Favre deployed a 5-3-2 formation in a successful bid to maintain Nice’s unbeaten start to the campaign.

The 26-year-old looked sharp on his bow for his new club, twice going close following his spot kick.

He forced a smart save from the goalkeeper after 17 minutes, cutting in from the left before unleashing a ferocious 20-yard drive which was palmed away.

His long-range free-kick 10 minutes later had to be tipped around the post as he continued to probe.

The win moved Nice up to second in Ligue