Valerien Ismael on Mario Balotelli links with Barnsley FC

BARNSLEY head coach Valerien Ismael has said that the club will not be pursuing a move for former Liverpool and Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli.

Representatives of the Italy international forward were contacted by the Reds hierarchy about his situation recently. But it never got further than making an inquiry.

Ismael - who has Jordan Williams and Romal Palmer back in the fray ahead of Saturday's home game with Nottingham Forest - will wait until January until making a move for an additional frontman, mindful that Cauley Woodrow and Victor Adeboyejo are back on the pitch following injury.

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On the link with Balotelli, the Frenchman said: "I think it is not a secret we are looking for a striker.

Valerien Ismael.Valerien Ismael.
Valerien Ismael.

"For sure, we have a lot of names proposed to us and Mario Balotelli was among them. The first important thing is that any player must to us come fit and able to contribute immediately.

"That's why it's always a dangerous situation to go in free agent market with our way to play football and the second thing is that with Cauley Woodrow and Victor (Adeboyejo), we have two strikers capable to play this way of football.

"I think we need to wait until January to make the right decision.

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"It is a lovely story for journalists, but seriously, we have to show what could be good for Barnsley and way to play football. High intensity is the first principle.

"I don't think we are go into more details with this name. (Balotelli)."

Offering a players perspective following Barnsley's shock link with Balotelli, Woodrow adedd: "It was probably a little bit of shock, to be honest. There were a few messages in the group chat.

"He has been a massive player in his career and it was a little bit of shock for us."

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