Andrea Pirlo says Mario Balotelli needs love, so show him some

The discerning, aged cognac drinking soccer fan’s favorite player, Andrea Pirlo, has come to the defense of fellow Italian, Mario Balotelli:

“The difference between other players and Mario is that every action he takes is going to be scrutinized,”

“The media is interested in him, and things he does are going to be highlighted – where perhaps with other players they would not get such a reaction – or maybe even no reaction at all.”

“There is no question over his talent – I have played with him and I know how good he is and how good he can be. It is the job of the Liverpool coach to manage him in the right way.”

“He needs to be loved, he needs direction, but most importantly he needs to know that the coach believes in him.”

“If he spends time with Mario – I know he can still go on and be a great player for Liverpool.”

He’s talking to you, Brendan. This kind of reaction has to stop. Show the man some love. Mario is a wounded bird and he needs you to help him fly again.

Pirlo is a tremendously well-respected voice among soccer fans who spend their afternoons erotically applying sumptuous oils to their leather bound books. The people that matter. The tastemakers and influencers.

If I know the soccer internet — and I’m pretty sure I do — all complaints and insults about Mario Balotelli are officially over. To continue and point out Mario’s “struggles” — one goal in 10 games with Liverpool; a recent drop from the Italy squad — is to announce to the world that you believe yourself to be smarter than Andrea Pirlo, and that would require a lack of self-awareness and hubris only seen by the likes of Mario Balotelli in the farthest depths of reddit.

You’re better than that. Get in line. It was already clear that your understanding of Balotelli was flawed, but Pirlo has offered you a chance at redemption.

Take heed. Understand that Mario is a sensitive man. He writes poetry. You thought that camoflagued Bentley was about being flashy? No! It was commentary about the media coverage he receives. He’s so visible, yet no one ever really sees him, man.

Besides, do you think you’re better than this man?

He carries his own luggage off of private planes. Those bags are full of gold bricks and romantic pan flute sheet music. What have you done today?

Will all the pressure on him now gone, Balotelli is sure to score at least 20 goals for Liverpool this season. And we all have Andrea Pirlo to thank.