Mario Balotelli claims he spoke to Jurgen Klopp “once” and says neither Liverpool nor AC Milan were “ideal environments” for him.
The 26-year-old joined Milan in January 2013 before moving to Liverpool the following year but never settled on Merseyside and returned to the San Siro on loan last season where he struggled with injury.
He appears to be more settled after joining Nice, where he has scored six goals in five games.
Klopp doesn’t know me, I spoke to him once, he told me to go somewhere else, work hard and then return,” Balotelli told Sky Italia.
“So I said goodbye to them, and that we wouldn’t be seeing each other again.”
He also claimed both Milan and Liverpool “weren’t adapted to me”, adding: “It wasn’t anyone’s fault. They weren’t ideal environments for me.
“I didn’t make mistakes in terms of my game or my behaviour, but I did get injured and that’s not something I can control.”
Balotelli described the climate at Milan as confusing but, despite picking up a red card after scoring the winner for Nice against Lorient on Sunday, he says he is feeling settled in France.
“The problem there [Milan] is the administration,” Balotelli said. “There’s only one person who is phenomenal, and that’s [club CEO, Adriano] Galliani. All the rest is just… confusion.
“At the start, I chose Nice for the climate, I wanted to be in a relaxing but beautiful place, where it’s difficult to get out the wrong side of the bed. The other reason I chose Nice is because there’s a decent group of young players. We’re all about the same age.”
Balotelli was not selected for Italy’s upcoming World Cup qualifiers at home to Spain and away in Macedonia and has not played for the national side since the defeat to Uruguay in the final group match of the 2014 World Cup.
However, he says he wants to get back to his best form before a return to Giampiero Ventura’s squad.
“It was right not to select me because I didn’t deserve it,” Balotelli said. “It’s better for Ventura to not select me this time around because when I return, I want to be at my best.”