Two weeks ago, news — "news" — surfaced that Mario Gomez was absolutely, totally headed to Liverpool FC. Two seasons spent mostly injured or in unspectacular form at Fiorentina have resulted in the German international looking for a move somewhere that his fortunes might improve, and Liverpool's ongoing striker challenges have made the club ground zero for any and every striker-related rumour this summer.
The twist this time out is that Gomez would head to Merseyside on a season-long loan, according to the Express, with fellow striker Mario Balotelli moving in the opposite direction to spend a season on loan at Fiorentina. It's not quite the player swap rumours we live and dream for since these are loans and not sales, but those with a taste for unconventional transfer agreements certainly have a lot to sink their teeth into with this one.
Just like he was two weeks ago, Mario Gomez continues to be an odd fit for Liverpool in general, and doesn't really fit the description of what Brendan Rodgers is looking for in a striker. For his part, Mario Balotelli seems chronically linked to clubs in Italy despite his decision to leave his home country in part because of the rampant racism he faced during his stint with AC Milan. Though there are silver linings for both players to be sure, such a loan deal seems heavy on the cons and decidedly lacking in the pros.
In spite of this, the Express report that both Liverpool and Fiorentina are "keen" to get a deal done and are merely awaiting signatures from their respective Marios. Whether they'll get them remains to be seen, but Mario Balotelli's absence from Liverpool's summer tour speaks volumes about his future with the club. If he does indeed depart then he'll need to go somewhere, and why not get his replacement from the same club?
Because player swap deals are incredibly rare, that's why.
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