Al-Arabi boss Gianfranco Zola opens door to Liverpool reject Mario Balotelli [Gazzetta dello Sport]

Speaking to Gazzetta dello Sport, Gianfranco Zola has welcomed Liverpool reject Mario Balotelli to come join him at Qatari club Al-Arabi.

The Chelsea legend and former Watford manager took over at Al-Arabi earlier this month, and already has his sights set on making ambitious signings.

Still lacking in the star quality of rivals Al Sadd, who boast Barcelona legend Xavi in their ranks, Zola would love to sprinkle his Al-Arabi side with some stardust, and sees compatriots Cassano and Balotelli as perfect fits due to their respective struggles.

Having been released by Parma at the end of last season, Antonio Cassano is currently a free agent, and could probably be tempted by one final pay day before retiring, while Balotelli’s career is at a crossroads, with Liverpool looking to offload him after just one season.

Balotelli’s agent Mino Raiola has been looking for suitors all summer to no avail, so a move further afield, away from football’s elite, may be the only option for Balo.

Zola told Gazzetta:

“Cassano and Balotelli? They are two top players, and it could be an excellent opportunity for them to play in a league with less scrutiny, recharge their batteries, and return to Europe as protagonists.’