Despite Jurgen Klopp’s ‘piece of s***’ message, Erling Haaland, Mario Balotelli, and why Liverpool could need Mino Raiola
Mino Raiola’s relationship with Liverpool has been one of the most tumultuous in the club’s history with player agents.
The 53-year-old Italian super agent has built a reputation for getting results for his customers when it comes to bringing in large sums of money, which has benefited his own bank account as well.
Raiola, whose glittering client list includes Paul Pogba, Erling Haaland, and Liverpool-linked Donyell Malen, has never shied away from the limelight, which landed him in hot water with Liverpool in 2016 over Mario Balotelli.
“At the end of the day, Liverpool directors admitted Klopp was unfair,” Raiola told La Gazzetta dello Sport after Balotelli was forced to train alone in pre-season and informed he had no future at Liverpool.
“I won’t pass judgment on him as a coach, even if I don’t think he’s a terrific tactician. I don’t think he realized we were discussing a specific individual. Mario was a model student, never complaining even when he was exercising alone.
“It isn’t enough to say Klopp was unjust; he was a jerk.”
Since then, their relationship has been tense, and the Reds have been hesitant to do business with him.
However, if a target is available and Raiola is in the background, there is little that a club can do to avoid getting involved if the deal is to be completed.
Haaland was marketed throughout Europe early this year, with Raiola meeting with officials from teams across the continent, including Liverpool, according to reports.
The Reds, on the other hand, are unlikely to be in the market for a player like Haaland this summer, at least not at the sums being suggested and the expected wages required to make such a move.
Malen, a 22-year-old PSV Eindhoven attacker who looks ready to join Borussia Dortmund, has been linked with the Bundesliga club for some time.
The Dutchman was considered as fitting the description for the type of recruiting that FSG believes is essential to solve the difficulties around an aging squad, with several players nearing the end of their contracts.
However, his future does not appear to be bright. “The summary has come to an end.”