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Rumour Mongering: Balotelli to Wolves or Port Vale

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Could Mario Balotelli find himself in England’s lower leagues? Probably not, but maybe?

Hull City v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

As was always likely to happen, the transfer rumors surrounding footballing superstar Mario Balotelli have become increasingly strange. Throughout the summer there have been suggestions of Super Mario playing in China, Turkey, and smaller Italian sides, none of which came particularly close to fruition.

Then a couple of weeks ago, the rumor mongers suggested that Balotelli could be off to the Dutch giants Ajax, dependent on their Champions League qualification. That too proved to be false. And just yesterday rumors emerged that he met with Manchester United boss and human frowny emoji Jose Mourinho.

So it’s been strange so far, and today things are getting even stranger, with two lower-league sides linked to the Liverpool striker. The Express and The Star, respectively, are linking Balotelli to Championship side Wolverhampton Wanders and League One side Port Vale.

At first blush, a move to the Wolves isn’t as crazy as it first sounds. They have new ownership and are aiming to get back to the Premier League for the first time since 2012.

Port Vale, admittedly, is a harder sell. The third division side have never played in England’s top flight—indeed, they’ve not even played in the Championship since 2000.

The problem with a move to either of these sides will likely be Balotelli’s high wages; £90,000 per week is a tough pill to swallow for most Premier League sides, so unless he agrees to another pay cut, this seems to be the biggest stumbling block.

This is not to say that Balotelli couldn’t benefit from a move to a Championship side (so long as that benefit is football related, not financially related). However, at this juncture it still seems unlikely.