Jun 6, 2014, 8:06 PM EDT
Mario Balotelli’s not going anywhere if AC Milan president Silvio Berlusconi has his way, but that hasn’t stopped the reports that he’s being shopped around the world to great interest.
The 23-year-old Palermo-born striker is worrying about his World Cup run with Italy, but clubs like Paris Saint-Germain and Borussia Dortmund have been said to be actively pursuing the forward.
“I believe that he will stay and will be part of the new team,” Berlusconi told reporters this week.
But personalities in Italy are defying those sentiments, including former Juventus general manager Luciano Moggi.
He said: “AC Milan have already tried to sell Balotelli in recent weeks. There are many teams interested.
“One team in Germany in particular [wanted to sign him] but the price was too high.”
And that has led to reports that PSG – for whom money is not considered an issue – are now in pole position to land Balotelli.
Despite frequent comments to the contrary, it is thought that the French side would allow unsettled Uruguayan Edinson Cavani to leave if they could secure a replacement of Balotelli’s quality.
Furthermore, Balotelli’s troublesome reputation and Milan’s desire to sell means that PSG could yet acquire the former Manchester City star for less than they could command for Cavani.”
The report also assumes that Cavani’s availability would be intriguing to Manchester United. We’ve seen how one domino starts the whole chain when it comes to strikers, and conversely the price for scorers could rise if Balotelli were kept off the market. Milan would be foolish not to at least test the waters, and an exchange deal might be what the doctor ordered.
As controversial as Balotelli may be, AC Milan need a striker of his caliber if the club wants to ascend Serie A after a relatively-horrible eighth place finish this season. Balotelli certainly bears his share of the blame, as his 14 goals in 30 matches in 2013/14 pale in comparison to the 12 he scored in less than a half-season at Milan to close out 2013.
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