Sunday 25 September 2016

The prospect of Mario Balotelli leaving Liverpool for Besiktas now looking remote

Published 28/07/2016 | 11:13

Besiktas had expressed an interest in signing Liverpool's Mario Balotelli
Besiktas had expressed an interest in signing Liverpool's Mario Balotelli

Mario Balotelli will not be swapping the Mersey for the Bosphorus after all.

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The president of Besiktas, Fikret Orman, suggested that he may be willing to take the troublesome Italian off Jürgen Klopp’s hands on Wednesday.

"Mario Balotelli is the type of footballer that our fans can associate themselves with," he told Turkish magazine Fanatik. "I'm pretty sure he would attract great attention.”

Hours later, however, those quotes appeared to be withdrawn by a statement on the club’s Turkish-language website. The article is not available on their English edition.

If Liverpool make any further additions this summer, it will probably be at left-back.

Charlie Taylor is the latest full-back to be suggested as an understudy, or even a replacement, for the hare-brained Alberto Moreno.

The Leeds defender, 22, is out of contract next summer and unwilling to extend his current deal at Elland Road.

Taylor has also been linked with Stoke and West Bromwich Albion recently.

Even with left-back being the obvious area to strengthen, Jese Rodriguez, the Real Madrid winger, has been linked to Liverpool.

Zinedine Zidane has advised the 23-year-old to seek first-team opportunities elsewhere, with Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema and Alvaro Morata ahead of him in the pecking order.

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