Leave Mario Balotelli Alone: An Open Letter From A Liverpool Fan To Other Liverpool Fans

Mario Balotelli is getting a lot of heat for congratulating Raheem Sterling on the latter's first goal for Manchester City. Here's why that needs to stop.

Dear Liverpool fans,

Not to go all Britney Spears Youtube guy on you, but y'all need to leave Mario Balotelli alone. 

You are not making the club look any better by hating on Mario Balotelli. In fact, you're making it look worse. Y'all are part of the reason players like Raheem Sterling want to leave Liverpool. Who would want to stay at a club where the fans treat the players like sh*t then expect them to go perform miracles on the pitch? Not me. 

If Steven Gerrard, or even Jordan Henderson, had been the one congratulating Sterling you would have applauded it and said it reflected that person's impeccable leasdrship qualities or some other bullsh*t. 

Is this just racism? Is it because he's black? Is it because he's not English?

You can't treat players like Balotelli like this and then expect them to pretend all is well, then call them headcases when it turns out all is not well. I'd be a headcase too if people said the things they say about Mario Balotelli about me. 

I am one of you, Liverpool fans. I want to see the club do as well as possible this season. I think they can make the Champions League and maybe even make a run at the league title if the pieces fit together correctly. But, one great way to make those pieces not fit together is by tormenting one of them into not wanting to fit. No footballer is more abused, racially or otherwise, on social media than Mario Balotelli, and he hasn't done anything to deserve it really.

Don't get me wrong, there are certainly times where it's appropriate to criticize Balotelli. That time he stole the penalty away from Jordan Henderson? Sure. When he shot fireworks off in his bathroom and set his house on fire? This video? Absolutely.

What people don't get is these players don't care about Liverpool. I mean, they care, it's part of their job to care, but they don't care like the fans do, unless they grew up a scouser and/or came up through the academy. 

This is their job. Do you have friends where you work, Liverpool fans? I bet you do. I do. And at your work, if one of your friends got a job they liked better and had success, wouldn't you be happy for them? It would be weird if you weren't. Balotelli and Sterling are friends. Balotelli congratulated his friend on scoring a goal. that's fine. If Sterling (God forbid) scores against Liverpool, and Balotelli congratulates him then, Balotelli deserves whatever he gets.

But if Sterling scores in a meaningless friendly against Roma, Balotelli should be happy for his friend. And you, Liverpool fans, should not care, because neither Sterling's goal nor Balotelli's response affect Liverpool at all. 

Contact The18 Staff Writer Sam Klomhaus at Klomhaus@The18.com or follow him on Twitter @SamKlomhaus

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