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Horncastle: Parma have been failed

Serie A
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Toure tells Balotelli that City are waiting for him

Kolo Toure has described Manchester City target Mario Balotelli as a "great player" and says he told the Italian that the City squad are eagerly awaiting his arrival at Eastlands.

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• Balotelli coy on future

City are still deep into negotiations to sign the forward, who turned 20 on Thursday, although they are expected to reach a deal with Inter Milan and sign Balotelli before the close of the transfer window.

Balotelli made his international debut for Italy against Toure's Ivory Coast on Tuesday night and the City defender admits he was impressed by his likely new team-mate.

"He's a great player," Toure said, "a really good guy as well. I had a few words with him on the pitch and then again afterwards, and I hope to see him soon.

"He's very strong, technically he's very good. He's fast and I think he's a player for the Premier League, definitely.

"His attitude is very good as well, he reminds me of Roy Keane, Patrick Vieira - these type of guys. They have a really strong mentality and, in the Premier League, we like those kind of players.

"I just told him that we are waiting for him, that's it. Now we hope that the deal will happen. We will see what happens."

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