Soccer Premier League

Top Five Potential Landing Spots for Mario Balotelli

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Five Potential Suitors for the Man City Striker

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The relationship between Mario Balotelli and Manchester City has become volatile after the striker’s training ground disagreement with manager Roberto Mancini. It’s clear that a parting of ways needs to happen in order for both parties to begin the healing process. The only problem at this point is who will be willing to pay anything in the area of the £37 million that City is expecting in return.

Many believe that Balotelli is headed for AC Milan, who appear willing to do just about anything to bring the Serbian international aboard as they attempt to move up the Serie A table.

Balotelli recently served notice on his rented property in Alderley Edge, making many believe that he’s ready to find a new residence as he continues his soccer career elsewhere. According to reports, he has already moved his possessions out of the house, so the writing appears to be on the wall.

One way or another, Balotelli seems prepared to never play for the Blues again. He is moved out, there’s no mending ties with Mancini and has been mentioned as a target for Milan nonstop since the run-in between the two. By all appearances, Balotelli has clocked out and is just waiting for his ride out of town to show up.

It’s time for a change of scenery for Balotelli. Unfortunately, the huge price tag hanging over his neck could make moving him a challenge. If it’s not Milan, there are other teams who could use his skill set. Here’s a look at five clubs that could be in the market for Balotelli before the January transfer window closes.

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Norwich City

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Only six points away from relegation, Norwich City needs to make a big, blockbuster move if they want to make some sort of impact in the EPL. Even with the addition of Nottingham Forest keeper Lee Camp, the Canaries are still in desperate need of a ground-breaking move that will help them assert themselves as contenders. Adding a player like Balotelli would make that instant impact, but the price tag might be too big.

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The Gunners have been struggling this season as they continue to lack firepower from the striker position. With Theo Walcott now secured for the long-term, it’s time for Arsene Wenger and Co. to turn their attention to making their front line more of a consistent threat. If all else fails for City, they could also look to unload Balotelli and his volatile character on Arsenal.

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Manchester United

van Persie
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I find it hard to believe that City would be willing to send Balotelli to Old Trafford, but it might be their only option when it comes to financial terms. Manchester United has always been willing to spend big money in order to land talented players, especially if Sir Alex Ferguson sees them as a fitting piece to his ever-changing puzzle. The addition of Balotelli could also help dispel the belief that Robin van Persie is the Red Devils’ one-man show.

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Only a few points behind Juventus on the Serie A table, Napoli are going to need an offensive boost with the potential transfer of striker Edinson Cavani looming in the not-so-distant future. Especially if Cavani makes the move, Napoli would have the pounds to add Balotelli into the mix and bring a new feel to the Serie A race. If they want a game-changer, Balotelli would definitely provide that.

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AC Milan

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As soon as Balotelli had his disagreement with Mancini, rumors began to swirl that the striker would be headed for Milan. The only thing standing in the way of him heading for No. 6 on the Serie A table is monetary compensation, as City is asking £37 million in return for his services. Milan is trying to move the pieces necessary to make this rumor a reality, and is considering selling Ignazio Abate in order to raise the extra cash. If City does move Balotelli, there’s a 99-percent chance it’ll be to Milan.

Gil Alcaraz IV is a Network Manager/NFL featured columnist for Follow him on Twitter @GilAlcarazIV, like him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.