Sinisa Mihajlovic has described Mario Balotelli's behaviour as "10 out of 10" - but has warned he must produce the goods for AC Milan.
The 25-year-old returned to San Siro on a season-long loan from Liverpool but has managed just 16 appearances - and three goals - as a result of injury problems throughout the campaign.
His only goal in Serie A came back in September and speculation this week has linked with Italy international with a possible move to China, with his career in Europe having seemingly stalled.
Mihajlovic, however, is confident Balotelli can still prove a top player for Milan after praising him for keeping his off-the-field indiscretions to a minimum.
"I was blunt with him," he told Sky when asked about a recent meeting with the striker. "I wanted to talk to him and look at him, because I've known Mario since Roberto Mancini gave him his Inter debut.
"He was a kid then. Many years have passed and he's changed, too. I found a mature person, a man, not a boy.
"I wanted to look him in the eyes, and he gave me the right impression. The key thing is that he's a good lad, and I really like him.
"He knows he's made a lot of mistakes, he's the first to admit that. It's true that everything is amplified when it comes to him, but it's also true that he brings a lot of that onto himself.
"His behaviour has been 10 out of 10 this year. He has to do more on the pitch, but he knows that as well and we've often talked about it. I'm certain we'll succeed."