Liverpool best top-flight fit for departing AC Milan front man

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The longer the summer months draw on, the less likely it seems that Mario Balotelli will remain an AC Milan player.

Having finished the season without qualifying for European football, and almost 50 points behind eventual Serie A champions Juventus, Milan are set to overhaul their squad this season with Balotelli thought to be among the first to be shown the exit.

A return to England looks likely for the 33/1 World Cup Golden Boot hopeful, with Arsenal, Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham all pursuing the possibility of landing the 23-year-old. But which of the quarter would be the best fit?

Before Mauricio Pochettino was made Spurs boss, the White Hart Lane side could have perhaps been the most attractive option for the Italian, but asking the forward to be the first line of defence in a high-pressing system could lead to eye-watering tackles and multiple suspensions.

A reunion with Jose Mourinho at Chelsea is a link easily made after the pair’s work at Inter Milan together and respective tributes separated. However, with a deal for Atletico Madrid’s Diego Costa made, Chelsea are unlikely to require Balotelli’s services.

Unlike the Blues, Arsenal’s attacking stocks are certainly in need of bolstering ahead of next season, where they are 9/1 to win the Premier League title. Judging by the problems Nicklas Bendtner has caused Arsene Wenger during his time at the Emirates though, the Frenchman is unlikely to want an upgrade in the pest department.

One man who clearly relishes trying to tame players’ wild streaks is Brendan Rodgers, and the Liverpool boss will need extra strikers to join Luiz Suarez and Daniel Sturridge now his side are in the Champions League.

Rickie Lambert is already heading to Anfield next term, but Rodgers’ willingness to switch systems and Balotelli’s ability to play out wide (another area of the pitch the Reds need to reinforce) make the 11/2 title hopefuls the best career move the former Manchester City front man can make.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.