Barnsley boss Valerien Ismael has admitted that talks took place over potentially signing Mario Balotelli but he insisted the club will only bring in the right player to suit their style.
The new Tykes chief has enjoyed a fine start at Oakwell but he is lacking depth up front. As a result, it had been reported that the former Manchester City star was a surprise target as a free agent, although no deal was likely.
And, speaking to Yorkshire Live, Ismael revealed the Italian’s name had popped up on their radar but he hinted that Barnsley’s approach may not suit the 30-year-old.
“I think it is not a secret we are looking for a striker. For sure, we have a lot of names proposed to us and Mario Balotelli was among them. The first important thing is that any player must to us come fit and able to contribute immediately.
“It is a lovely story for journalists, but seriously, we have to show what could be good for Barnsley and way to play football. High intensity is the first principle. I don’t think we are go into more details with this name.”
Balotelli is available on a free having last featured for Brescia in Serie A in the previous season.
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This would undoubtedly have been one of the most remarkable signings of the year, so it’s a shame that it doesn’t appear to be happening now.
However, you can totally understand where Ismael is coming from and he is right to focus on players who will suit his style.
Pressing from the front and chasing lost causes are two qualities he demands from his attackers, and unless Balotelli has dramatically changed his ways, he wouldn’t fit in at Oakwell!
Thoughts? Let us know in the comments below.