Fiorentina coach discusses whether he would swap Ilicic for Liverpool's Balotelli

Mario Balotelli Italy

Fiorentina indicate they are not interested in signing Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli.

Mario Balotelli's poor goal return of one Serie A strike this season makes him a tricky problem for Liverpool to solve this summer.

The Italian striker has done little to persuade Liverpool he should come back and be part of their first team, while he has hardly put himself in the shop window either.

Fiorentina youth team coach Massimo Orlandi was quizzed on the former Azzurri international this week by Tuttomercatoweb, and asked if he was worth swapping Josip Ilicic for.

The Slovenian has struck 14 goals this season, 12 in Serie A, with six assists.

Orlandi said: "I did not see signs of improvement by Balotelli and I would say that [deal] would gain Liverpool. I no longer believe in Balotelli, he has had too many opportunities which he then did not exploit."

"It's clear that if it was the Balo of many years ago it would be a different matter, but now it's an exchange that I would not do."

Balotelli's loan deal at AC Milan expires in June, and it remains to be seen if they will push through a permanent deal.

The striker is highly paid, which makes him less tempting to mid-level teams in Serie A looking to make a splash, and Liverpool's best bet may be attempting to offload him to a Chinese Super League team.

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