Is former Man City striker heading back to the Premier League with West Ham United?
According to The Mirror, former Man City and Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli could be on his way to West Ham.
West Ham have suffered enough this transfer window. Callum Wilson has been a player who The Hammers have kept an eye on all summer and he has now opted to stay at Bournemouth. Maxi Gomez was also a target who has now opted to move to Valencia rather than the Premier League. This summer has also seen the departures of Lucas Pérez, Andy Carroll and Marko Arnautovic.
This leaves West Ham now in need of recruits. The Mirror has reported that Manuel Pellegrini’s side has been offered free agent, Mario Balotelli. The odds have been favouring more and more towards the striker signing for the Hammers over the past few days.
When you look at Balotelli as a footballer, yes, definitely go ahead and sign him. He could be highly beneficial to West Ham and he would deliver as he’s used to the Premier League. However, the club, manager and fans have to consider Mario’s off-pitch reputation.
Man City days
The 28-year-old striker has an impressive form to look back on and I think all football fans remember him especially from his time at Man City. He was at the Manchester side from 2010 to 2013 and in his 54 appearances, he bagged 20 goals. From 2013-2014, he appeared 43 times and scored 26 times for AC Milan which found the interest of Liverpool. Unfortunately, he didn’t have a successful period there and they loaned him back to AC Milan. He only found the back of the net once in 20 games.
The past few years have seen a bit of an improvement as Balotelli spent 3 years with Nice. In 2019, he signed for Marseille where he scored 8 goals in 12 games. Only now, it’s looking like he could be let go for free.
Even though his transfer fee may not cost a penny, his wages probably will stack up so if a fee can be negotiated for the striker to be paid, he should be an exciting signing. Fans have been very divided on the player, as some believe he will be worth it for his football. Quite a few remember the reputation he made for himself and are quite put off.
Off the field
The Italian was known to be in a “training ground bust-up” with the ex-Man City manager, Mancini. Jose Mourinho once described him as ‘unmanageable.’ He drove into a women’s prison for a ‘look around,’ threw darts at a youth player during a training ground ‘prank’. There’s a list of things that have been reported that will probably never be cleared up to whether they’re true or not.
Some West Ham fans are saying that his behaviour has calmed down so he may be able to focus on playing football. However, only this week, The Sun reported that he paid a man £1800 to drive his moped into the sea.
What do you think West Ham fans?