Mario Balotelli in talks with Serie C minnows Como over transfer as star’s career nosedives

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MARIO BALOTELLI is in talks with Italian THIRD TIER outfit Como over a potential transfer move.

The former Manchester City and Liverpool star is due to be released by Brescia just 12 months into his three-year deal.

Massimo Cellino, the Serie A side’s owner, had a public falling out with the 29-year-old and now wants to activate a clause in his contract that enables him to rip up his deal after a season.

Now with Balotelli set to become a free agent, ambitious Serie C club Como have moved quickly to try and pull off a huge coup.

Como chief executive Michael Gandler told Football Italia: “There’s been some contact between the two parties.

“His representatives sat down to listen to us. I can’t say any more than that.”

Como’s new owner Robert Budi Hartono is believed to have an estimated fortune of around £14billion.

He has lofty ambitions to take the club into the top-flight and feels Balotelli is the man to fire them there.

 

Gandler previously said: “Serie A is definitely the goal, however, it’s not an ownership group that’s just going to throw money at the problem.

“The business philosophy is that we don’t buy value, we create value. Spending a bunch of money on players isn’t creating value.

“We’re probably the only club that spends less than 50 per cent of our budget on players.

“Most of them are probably 80 to 90 per cent.”

And the deal for Balotelli would fit into that model due to the lack of transfer fee, although the much-travelled frontman is expected to demand a hefty wage package.

Brescia appear desperate to get him off their books, with Cellino admitting it was a “mistake” to sign him.

Both parties are now set for a legal battle.

Cellino said back in May: “He no longer has his head with us and I am taking his departure for granted.

“It’s not necessarily different to what he’s always done in his career – he’s just a bit anarchic.”

Balotelli has scored five goals in 19 appearances for Brescia this campaign.

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