Newcastle fans in the Tavern can finally rest easy and enjoy the remainder of the season after securing mathematical safety in the Premier League.
Takeover rumours are still rife with fans desperate for Mike Ashley to sell the club and give Rafael Benitez some money to operate in the transfer market. Goals have been a real struggle for the Magpies and loan signing Islam Slimani has made just one appearance since joining from Leicester due to injury.
If Ashley remains in control of the club, Benitez could be forced to operate with tight purse strings in the transfer market once again as he looks to improve his lacklustre playing squad. The former Liverpool boss could dip into the free transfer market with plenty of big-names out of contract in the summer.
One man who is yet to sign a contract extension is former Liverpool and Manchester City striker, Mario Balotelli. The Italian forward left the Reds to join Nice in Ligue 1 and has finally started to realise his potential in France. He has bagged 14 goals in only 24 appearances, averaging a goal every 138 minutes, for the French club this season and Nice are resigned to losing their star forward in the summer.
Valued at £19.8m by Transfermarkt, Balotelli would be available for absolutely nothing, giving Benitez some valuable funds to strengthen other areas of his squad. The Italian forward has struggled during his two spells in England, but at just 27-years-old, there is still time for him to turn his career around and make a name for himself in the Premier League.
Despite his previous problems, signing Balotelli could prove to be a masterstroke for the Magpies.
Newcastle fans, would you be happy to see Balotelli in a black and white shirt? Let us know!
Click here to comment on this articleor
Give us feedback on your Football Transfer Tavern experience