Italian could make surprise switch to the Emirates Stadium.
Arsenal are weighing up a shock January move for Manchester City maverick Mario Balotelli, according to reports.
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is understood to be an admirer of the Italian and believes he can bring the best of out the controversial striker.
Balotelli has only managed one Premier League goal this season for the Champions, with manager Roberto Mancini favouring Carlos Tevez, Sergio Aguero and Edin Dzeko in attack.
The former Inter Milan star has been linked with a move back to Italy this month, with Inter’s city rivals AC Milan reportedly keen on a cut-price deal for the 22-year-old.
Mancini has insisted that Balotelli will remain at the Etihad Stadium but Wenger is understood to weighing-up a shock move for the Italian international forward.
Wenger has seen a number of Arsenal stars depart for Eastlands in recent seasons, with Samir Nasri, Gael Clichy, Emmanuel Adebayor and Kolo Toure all swapping red for sky blue.
But the Frenchman believes the promise of regular first-team football at the Emirates Stadium could tempt Balotelli to jump ship and he is ready to test City’s resolve with an £18m bid.
Arsenal have been linked with a number of strikers in recent weeks but alleged top-target Klaas-Jan Huntelaar has signed a new contract with Schalke, while Fernando Llorente, another forward admirer by Wenger, is close to joining Juventus from Atletico Bilbao.
A move to bring Balotelli to the Emirates would certainly be groundbreaking but Wenger is no stranger to dealing with sulky players, having managed the likes of Jens Lehman, Nicolas Anelka and Andrei Arshavin.
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