The latest transfer rumours are suggesting that Italian international Mario Balotelli is a possible target for North London club Arsenal
Arsene Wenger’s side are notoriously short in the centre forward position and arguably are yet to replace all time goalscorer Thierry Henry. Balotelli is a proven goalscorer in the Premier League after his time with Manchester City but questions remain about his temperament and professionalism.
The forward, who currently plays for Italian giants AC Milan, may be sold as the club look to reduce their wage bill. It is understood that officials from Arsenal are enquiring as to how much the deal would cost them and whether Balotelli would be agreeable to such a move.
Having scored the winner against England in this years World Cup, the striker will be keen to showcase his talents. He is without doubt a very capable player, scoring 30 goals in a three-year stay at City and winning the Premier League with them. But he will be known for his antics off of the pitch.
The Italian has never been far from controversy, something that Wenger will have to think about should he attempt to construct a deal. Balotelli has been photographed in the company of Mobsters, has fired air pistols into a crowded plaza, thrown darts at a youth team player. Perhaps most famously, he, along with a group of friends, set his house on fire after letting a firework off in the bathroom.
In the 2011-12 season, he was sent off four times, causing then manager Roberto Mancini to say “I’ve finished my words for him. I’ve finished”. Mancini was aghast to see Balotelli through on goal in a friendly against LA Galaxy only to showboat with a back heel, missing the goal completely. He was immediately substituted.
Despite all this, the man from Milan is without doubt a great player, a strong target man who would compliment any side in any league. Arsenal need a centre forward to compete for the Premier League next season. The World Cup is the biggest stage in the world and Wenger will no doubt be keen to see what impact he makes on Italy’s campaign.
If he is to move to the Gunners, can Wenger rein in his “unmanageable” personality and get the best out of him?