Arsenal join chase for Italian U21 star

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Arenal boss Arsene Wenger has reportedly joined the chase for rising Italian star Mario Balotelli.

The Inter Milan striker was linked with a handful of clubs in January after a supposed bust-up with Jose Mourinho, and now Arsenal are the latest club to join in the hunt for 'Super Mario'.

Italian paper La Gazzetta Dello Sport and website both link the Gunners with the 19-year-old, and Balotelli is thought to be looking for an exit after a tempetuous season at the San Siro.

Mourinho has questioned the player's attitude on several occasions this season, launching a string of public attacks despite some crucial goals for the Nerazzurri.

Balotelli has also been subjected to a string of racial chants in Serie A, with Juventus being punished for the behaviour of their fans.

Arsene Wenger could offer the youngster a way out of the Italian league, although Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini is also believed to be interested in the frontman.

The teenager made his debut for Inter in December 2007, and has since scored 24 goals in 71 appearances. Balotelli has notched seven goals and five assists so far this campaign.

He won the first of his 15 caps for the U21 side in 2008, and although Balotelli is yet to win his first senior cap he is seen as an outside bet for the Italian World Cup squad.

Frenchman Wenger is renowned for getting the best out of young talent, and could be seen as the perfect manager for a mercurial talent like Balotelli. With the Gunners linked with a handful of strikers already, expect 'Super Mario' to be on the target list when the summer transfer window comes around.

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