Soccer Football - Europa League Round of 32 Second Leg - Lokomotiv Moscow vs OGC Nice - RZD Arena, Moscow, Russia - February 22, 2018 Nice's Mario Balotelli in action with Lokomotiv Moscow’s Igor Denisov and Manuel Fernandes REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin
CAIRO – 4 March 2018: Mario Balotelli’s agent, Mino Raiola, spoke at RAI Sport about the future of the Italian footballer. The striker, who currently plays for Nice, has four months until his contract runs out, and he could leave for free at the end of the season.
Balotelli, who has scored 21 goals in 29 games this season, wants to return to the elite of football. Raiola has begun to move the market to place him in a top team.
The agent is convinced that the player "has matured" and that he is ready to face a new stage in his football career.
CAPTION: Soccer Football - Ligue 1 - AS Monaco vs OGC Nice - Stade Louis II, Monaco - January 16, 2018 Nice's Mario Balotelli in action REUTERS/Eric Gaillard
According to the agent, Mario Balotelli is currently worth about €100 million ($123 million), a fact that makes him a real “bargain” to be able to leave for free during the next summer transfer market.
Raiola places him among the top 10 strikers at the moment and says he has received offers from both the Premier and Serie A leagues.
"Mario is ready to come back to Italy. He is one of the 10 best strikers in the world, and the number one in Italy," he told RAI.
"I'm already negotiating with many teams in England and Italy. I talked with Juventus, Roma, Napoli, Inter," he said.
CAPTION: Soccer Football - Europa League - OGC Nice Training - Moscow, Russia - February 21, 2018 - Nice's Mario Balotelli trains. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin
Raiola also spoke to Radio Kiss Kiss Napoli and assured that his player would be ideal for Napoli.
"It's obvious that whoever takes Mario on a free transfer will be getting a bargain," Raiola told Radio Kiss Kiss Napoli.
"If I were Napoli, I'd take him; he's one of the best strikers around. [Maurizio] Sarri has had an enormous growth and he'd be ideal for the Naples environment,” Raiola said.
When his career seemed destined to fail, he resurfaced again to be one of the best players in Ligue 1, competing with Paris Saint Germain’s Cavani, Neymar and Mbappe.
"Balotelli is explosive on the pitch; he's made strides forward with his behavior. Napoli would be fantastic for a player with his characteristics and his character,” Raiola continued.
“Super Mario” has scored 21 goals in 29 games this season in the French league, Europa League, qualifying round for the Champions League and the French Cup.
Mario Balotelli has scored Nice’s 3,000th goal in Ligue 1.
The Italian striker scored a bullet header to give the south coast side an early lead over Lille on Friday.
"There are players who are afraid to come to Naples, but clearly not him. They have to believe to take him, but it would be a bargain,” Raiola concluded.
His numbers since he joined OGC Nice are typical of a striker who is returning to top form.
At only 27 years old, he still has the chance to revive his career despite the reputation his attitude has brought him.
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