West Ham eyeing up summer move for Balotelli? Here’s why it works…
Premier League club looking at the Italian
Mario Balotelli has lit up Ligue 1 with Nice this season. The 27-year-old forward has scored 21 goals in 29 matches for Les Aiglons.
And now reports in Turkey suggest the ex-Liverpool and Manchester City man could be on his way back to the Premier League with West Ham United this summer.
The Hammers are 3/1 to sign the maverick Italian but could face competition from the continent, with Galatasaray (2/1), Valencia (5/1) and Schalke (8/1) also said to be interested. Fellow Londoners Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur are 14/1 each.
However, the Coral News Team think that the three-time Serie A winner would be the perfect fit at the Olympic Stadium. And here’s why…
Mavericks thrive in East London
West Ham love a non-conformist type player. Think Paolo Di Canio, think Ravel Morrison and to a lesser extent think Marko Arnautovic. They’re three players who have the ability to turn nothing into something.
Balotelli is very much in that mould. And as he’s proven at Nice, he enjoys being the big fish in a small(ish) pond. Sometimes a player thrives in the right circumstances. The Olympic Stadium has all of the required ingredients for the 6ft 2in striker to hit the ground running.
He’s Premier League quality
A player not having Premier League experience isn’t usually reason enough for a club not to sign them. But for the Hammers that could well ring true.
Jonathan Calleri, Simone Zaza, Pablo Barrera, Nene and Savio are just five players who have unwisely opted to move to East London in the last decade or so without tasting English football. All have failed miserably.
The quintet form part of a tapestry of strikers that have failed to make the grade at the Irons since the early-2000s. With Balotelli, the Hammers know what they’re getting. He’s proven in the division and able to handle all of its demands.
His confidence his back
Balotelli had a torrid time of things at Liverpool. The Italian didn’t suit the Reds’ style of play and found chances hard to come by as a result. A tally of four goals in 22 games at Anfield belied his undoubted quality.
So a move away from the spotlight to Nice came just at the right time for the enigmatic hitman. Since moving to the French Riviera last summer, the Palermo-born forward has scored 38 goals in 57 matches in all competitions.
He’s bagged 21 times in total this season and despite picking up 11 yellow cards for the French club, has been one of their star players. The Italian forward has his confidence back and should now be ready for a timely return to the English top-flight.
With the Hammers yearning for a genuine top-quality marquee signing in the summer, Balotelli could be their man.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing