By Russell Edge

22nd Mar, 2018 | 4:13pm

Report: West Ham eye stunning bargain swoop for ex-PL attacker ripping up Europa League

West Ham are eyeing up a stunning move to snap up former Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli on a free transfer from current club Nice this summer, according to a report.

Turkish news outlet A Spor claim on their website that the Hammers are one of several clubs interested in signing the 27-year-old when his contract in France comes to an end, with Galatasaray, Valencia and Schalke all credited with making a potential swoop.

The 33-cap Italy international has scored 22 goals this season, including six strikes in seven appearances as he tore up the Europa League.

He has 70 Premier League appearances under his belt, netting 21 times, during his time with Manchester City, his time in England marked by a number of controversial incidents both on and off the pitch.

Football Insider verdict

While West Ham do need more firepower up front, one of the last things they need right now is more controversy, and whether he means it or not, Balotelli radiates controversy wherever he goes. Could the Italian do a job up top for the Irons? Well their current options are not offering much, aside from Marko Arnautovic, and if they could play to the 27-year-old’s strengths, then he could well be a canny signing. Whether David Moyes can control the striker’s larger than life personality, and get him firing on all cylinders, is another matter. What a signing it would be though.

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In other West Ham news, Moyes must unleash this rarely-seen £10million player after the international break.

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