After crashing out of the Champions League to Atletico Madrid on Tuesday night, the faintest chance of AC Milan appearing in next season’s competition has disappeared.
It is very unlikely that 10-goal striker and Italian superstar Mario Balotelli will remain at the club currently 11th in Serie A next season. Rumoured to be linked with Chelsea, Arsenal and most recently Tottenham Hotspur, the striker has been given another option, it seems he is wanted by royal appointment.
The House of Grimaldi still owns 33.3% of Ligue 1 side AS Monaco, and that still gives Prince Albert of Monaco a substantial say in who the team attracts to Monte Carlo. Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev is the one signing the cheques, but the Prince has been outspoken recently as to who he would like to see appear at “le rocher”.
In a recent interview he joked about the possibility of Zlatan Ibrahimovic making the move to Monaco, but in the Gazzetta dello Sport magazine supplement “Extra Time” he was clear that a move for Balotelli would definitely be considered.
"He is a character and a very special player. He is an impressive talent, he can surprise. He is unpredictable on and off the field. It would be a risk, although I'm open to everything,"
Monaco are readily looking to recruit for their assault on the Champions League next season. Nearly 10 years has passed since they were beaten by Porto in the final of the competition in Gelsenkirchen, it would be too soon to predict a return to the final, but they will want to prepare themselves for a decent run in Europe’s premier cup competition.
Balotelli will want to make sure he is playing at the pinnacle of European football and Monaco would give him the outlet to express himself both on and off the pitch.
Superstar striker Radamel Falcao is still recovering from a knee injury, he is in a rush against time to make it to this summer’s World Cup, but he will definitely be ready for the new Ligue 1 season this August. The potential of pairing the predatory skills of the Colombian with the mobility and unpredictability of Balotelli is mouth-watering. Add in the excellent talents of playmaker James Rodriguez and you start to imagine a front-line that could not only challenge PSG domestically, but they would grab the attention of most of Europe's top clubs.
It is unclear whether Prince Albert would like current Italian coach Claudio Ranieri to continue in the role next season, but perhaps the experience he brings to the squad could just be the personality needed to tame and nurture the former Manchester City striker’s wild side.
Balotelli is always a gamble, but where better than Monte Carlo to go all-in on “Super Mario”