Report: Marseille set to sign Newcastle-linked Mario Balotelli

Nice's Italian forward Mario Balotelli looks on during the French L1 football match between Guingamp (EAG) and Nice (OGCN) at the Roudourou stadium, in Guingamp, northwestern France on...

Balotelli was linked with a shock move to Newcastle.

Nice's Italian forward Mario Balotelli (R) drives the ball during the French L1 football match OGC Nice vs Angers SCO at 'Allianz Riviera' stadium in Nice, southern France on December 4,...

Sky Italy journalist Gianluca Di Marzio has claimed that Marseille are set to sign Mario Balotelli from Ligue 1 side OGC Nice in the coming days - meaning Newcastle United are set to miss out.

The Mirror claimed Newcastle were tempted with a move to land the 28-year-old this month in a bid to help them avoid relegation to the Championship.

 

Balotelli was in explosive form for Nice last season, scoring a huge 26 goals in 38 league and cup encounters, but this season he has not proved as prolific in front of goal.

Indeed, the 36-time Italy international has only managed 10 appearances, and he has failed to score at all for Nice throughout the first half of the season. It may mean that Nice are willing to offload the controversial striker.

Nice's Italian forward Mario Balotelli reacts during the French L1 football match between Nice and Lille at The 'Allianz Riviera' Stadium in Nice, south-eastern France on November 25, 2018....

Newcastle were linked with a shock move to bring Balotelli back to England, having already played for both Manchester City and Liverpool. But now, it seems as though The Toon have been beaten to his signature.

Indeed, Di Marzio claims Marseille are set to land the nomadic forward. The renowned transfer expert claims a deal is "close to conclusion" and a "green light" has been given to Marseille to land the striker.

Nice's Italian forward Mario Balotelli looks on during the warm up prior to the French L1 football match between Bordeaux (FCGB) and Nice on October 28, 2018 at the Matmut Atlantique...

Have something to tell us about this article?

Register for NEWCASTLE UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch