Stats: How Mario Balotelli fared on his Liverpool debut

Mario Balotelli playing for AC Milan

The Italian will likely have better games in a red shirt than the one he played at White Hart Lane on Sunday.

Liverpool may have enjoyed a pleasantly quiet transfer deadline day - but that, of course, was because their main transfer business had already been done.

And one man they brought in to fill a big Luis-Suarez shaped hole partook in his first ever Liverpool game on Sunday.

It was a good day for the Reds, as Brendan Rodgers' side left Tottenham with a memorable 3-0 win - not the first they've enjoyed at White Hart Lane in recent times.

But, for that debutant, £16 million signing Mario Balotelli, his first game in a Liverpool shirt could have gone a lot better.

  PositionTeamShotsShots on TargetDribbles WonSuccessful Final-Third PassesAccurate PassesAerial Duels Won
Mario Balotelli FW Liverpool 5 1 1 4 8 0
Average Joe - - 1.96 0.63 1.32 14.67 61.93 2.72

As Opta stats show, the Italy striker managed just one shot on target out of five, one successful dribble and eight accurate passes.

Compared to Daniel Sturridge and, more pertinently, Raheem Sterling, the 23-year-old had a terrible game. But it makes even more sense to compare him to 'Average Joe' - a statistical persona that represents bang average in terms of everyone's Premier League stats combined.

In terms of dribbling, winning aerial duels and passing, then, Balotelli endured a Liverpool debut far below average. The only thing he did well was take more shots than Average Joe - though they were hardly the most accurate.

Still, the Italian's presence allowed Rodgers to do one key thing: revive the Liverpool diamond with two up top. For that alone, Balotelli's presence can be said to have been worth it.

More, now, will be required from the 23-year-old in terms of his individual performance. But first-day nerves can certainly be forgiven if your side manages to win 3-0, anyway. 

Will Liverpool see more from Balotelli in the coming weeks?

Register for LIVERPOOL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch