•Mario Balotelli signs three-year contract with Liverpool, with the Italian striker costing £16million from AC Milan
•Former Manchester City star will wear the No 45 shirt at Anfield and trained alone at Melwood on Monday
•The 24-year-old will earn £125,000-a-week at Liverpool, and will watch his new side’s clash with City at the Etihad
•Balotelli: ‘Liverpool are one of the best teams here in England and the football is very good here’
•The Italian added: ‘I’m happy to be back because I left England and it was a mistake’
Balotelli told the Liverpool club website: ‘I’m very happy. We’ve been talking about coming here and now I’m happy to be here. Liverpool are one of the best teams here in England and the football is very good here.
‘It’s a great team with young players, and that’s why I came here.’
He has won the Champions League, three Serie A championships and the FA Cup, plus 33 caps for Italy during which he has scored 13 goals including the strike that accounted for England in the World Cup. He has also had a colourful career and has often fallen out with his managers.
Balotelli, who has the option of a fourth year when his new contract runs out in 2017, also admitted he was surprised by the reaction he got from Liverpool fans upon his arrival.
He added: ‘I didn’t expect [the incredible reception from fans] because I’ve always been playing against Liverpool. Whenever I played against Liverpool, the fans weren’t nice with me but that’s normal – it’s football!
‘Now that I play for Liverpool, I can see the expectation in people. They’re very happy and that makes me very happy at the same time.
‘When I play with this team [at Anfield], it’s going to be nice for sure. To play here for Liverpool excites me, but if you’re an opponent it’s difficult.
‘I maybe have a little bit more experience than other players – if I can help them, I’m happy to help them.