Liverpool midfielder Allen excited over the arrival of Balotelli

Joe Allen of Liverpool cannot wait to link up with his new teammate.

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Liverpool midfielder Joe Allen believes the arrival of Mario Balotelli has got the club buzzing.

The controversial Balotelli completed his surprise £16million move from AC Milan to Anfield on Monday afternoon.

Balotelli, 24, has often mixed the sublime with the ridiculous in his relatively short career to date and his signing is a gamble by the Reds, but his potential is undoubted.

With a week of training, the Italian could make his debut at Tottenham on Sunday as Liverpool look to spark back into life after Monday’s reality check against champions Manchester City.

Allen said: "I am excited to work with him, he’s a player of massive quality.

"I think it is a signing that is another great addition. He has that spontaneous edge to him and it is a massive threat he’s going to give us.

"The squad has great balance now, strength in depth, and there is certainly going to be competition for places in every area.


"We are disappointed with Monday’s result but all of us are excited now for the weekend and the chance to put things right with a good result."

Balotelli’s arrival is likely to complete Liverpool’s summer recruitment programme as last season’s Barclays Premier League runners-up regroup in hope of another title tilt following the loss of talisman Luis Suarez.

The prolific Suarez undoubtedly left a void but the squad now has greater depth as a result of the signings of Lazar Markovic, Alberto Moreno, Adam Lallana, Rickie Lambert, Dejan Lovren, Emre Can and loanee Javier Manquillo.

Wales international Allen said: "Credit to the club – they have worked really hard this summer to bring in players and strengthen us after a positive season. It shows our ambition to take that step forward."

There are fears Balotelli, given his past problems with both Milan clubs and Manchester City, could upset morale in the dressing room.

It also remains to be seen how striker Daniel Sturridge responds to his addition but Allen is confident the England man can reprise the formidable partnership he formed with Suarez.

He said: "I am sure he is as excited as anyone else. Top players they love playing with other top players, I think it brings the best out in people.

"It is great to have competition throughout the squad. I think it really spurs people on to improve and be at their best."


Liverpool wanted to make a statement at the Etihad Stadium on Monday and they looked the stronger side for 40 minutes but ultimately it was City who proved their champion quality.

A mistake by debutant Moreno allowed Stevan Jovetic to score the first of his two goals four minutes before the break and the hosts upped the tempo in the second half.

Jovetic’s second and a goal for Sergio Aguero within seconds of coming on underlined City’s strength in depth as they eased to a 3-1 win. Liverpool’s consolation came via a Pablo Zabaleta own goal.

Allen said: "I think they were clinical. The balance of play before the first goal was pretty even but they put their chances away. We were always climbing a mountain after that.

"They are the small margins at this level. It is not completely negatives to take away but unfortunately we conceded three goals and they punished a lack of concentration in small parts of the game.

"Last season we had a great season but when we analyzed it we conceded goals too easily at times. It is something we are looking to rectify.

"We are on the right path. Against Man City it is tough because they have got quality in attack but I think throughout the season we will see a big improvement in that area.

"We are two games into the season and this is a tough place for any team to come and get a result, so I don’t think we are going to dwell too much on the result.

"We’ll look forward to going to White Hart Lane – another big game and a chance to be involved in an exciting game and get a result. We know we can."