Nice Coach Lucien Favre says Mario Balotelli is “making huge efforts to reach the required level”.
The Italian striker has rebuilt his career in France after a difficult spell at Liverpool and an ill-fated return to Milan, scoring seven goals in 10 appearances so far this season.
“He’s doing some things better than he did at the start,” Favre told UEFA’s official website.
“Mario needs to be supported, he needs you to talk to him. He needs the players in the squad to be close to him, because if he feels good he knows how to be decisive.
“He’s made a lot of progress with his movement, he’s become more unselfish and efficient. He still has work to do, but we all know that.
“He works very hard in training, he presses when he’s lost the ball. These are small steps forward, but important ones.
“After that you can’t do everything in a year, he needs time. I was already pleasantly surprised by his progress last year, and now he’s even more involved in the play.
“He’s making huge efforts to reach the required level.”