Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has indicated Mario Balotelli will be given a second season to justify his £16m ($25m) price tag despite a harrowing debut campaign at Anfield.
The Italy international joined from AC Milan in the 2014 summer transfer window as a replacement for Luis Suarez but has struggled to recapture his best form, scoring just four times in all competitions.
Balotelli's problems have come amid a troubling campaign for Liverpool, which they are set to end both without a major trophy and a place in next season's Champions League.
A third straight season without silverware has seen scrutiny swell over the future of Rodgers, while speculation is building over the make-up of his current squad, which has been supplemented by a string of uncertain signings in the transfer window.
Having recorded a poor goal tally this season, Balotelli is regarded as a likely departure in the summer but Rodgers says the two years remaining on the striker's contract means he will be given another opportunity to impress.
"Mario's doing his best," Rodgers told reporters. "He's obviously come off [in the second half of the 1-0 defeat to Hull City] with a foot injury. I think it's clear over the course of the season, not just this game, that [attack] is an area we've struggled in.
"He's still got a few years left on his contract. Every single player, every single day you come in at Liverpool, you're working for your future."
Without being able to offer Champions League football to prospective new players, Rodgers faces a tough task to convince Europe's best players to join Liverpool as they attempt to bridge the gap to the top four.
However, Rodgers is unperturbed by his side's likely absence from next season's top tier European competition and will continue to pursue "marquee" players during the summer.
"Every season you have to look to try to improve and this is another," Rodgers said, as quoted by the Mirror. "We can't hide away from fact we've lost over 50 goals from last season and any team is going to struggle to maintain their level with that.
"Now the challenge is even greater for us with Luis Suarez gone and Daniel Sturridge injured. The players have given their best to meet that challenge and standard, but we're not at that.
"We have to look to improve the squad again, which every big club will do. For fans and players, it's great to get those marquee players. They're maybe the one or two we need and the owners will support that. If they're available and affordable within the model, then we will look to get them."