Manchester City defender Kolo Toure has urged Mario Balotelli to move from Inter Milan and join him at Eastlands
Balotelli has been linked with a £25million move to Man City for several weeks and the big-spending Premier League side had been confident of completing a deal by now.
But talks remain ongoing amid speculation that the 19-year-old is holding out for a better deal after reportedly asking for £180,000-a-week in wages - much less than the £65,000 believed to have been offered by the Premier League side.
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Balotelli made his Italy debut on Tuesday night as he faced Toure, who scored the only goal of the game to give Ivory Coast a 1-0 win and has since revealed that he spoke with the young Inter striker after the game.
Toure told the Daily Star: "I spoke to him before the end of the match and afterwards. I just told him that we are waiting for him, that's it. Now we hope that the deal will happen."
He added: "Mario's very strong, he's technically very good, he's fast. I think he's a player for the Premier League, definitely.
"His attitude is very good as well, he reminds me of Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira, these type of guys.
"They have a really strong mentality and, in the Premier League, we like those kind of players. He's got everything to be a top player in the Premier League."
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Balotelli's agent Mino Raiola had earlier dismissed reports of his client's demands and believes a deal can still go through, although he has warned that other clubs are interested in signing the teenager.
Raiola told Sky Italia: "It's not true what has been written by the British tabloids.
"I would be preoccupied for the next five years of my life if I responded to such things in the tabloids.
"These voices are annoying Mario and he would like to respond, but it's not the time.
"We have no problems either with City or with Inter. At the table all three parties must be happy, we have made an important step forward.
"Mario has never asked for anything, he doesn't live for the money, but his passion is playing football.
"There is still something to find for an agreement between us and City, but I am confident there are only details.
"Manchester City remains the priority for us, but we also have other offers which we will evaluate carefully.
"Who? I can just say they come from both Italy and abroad."