PUMA are pushing Arsenal to close a deal for AC Milan striker Mario Balotelli. The Daily Express says PUMA are putting pressure on Arsenal to finalise a deal for Balotelli before July 10 so he can feature at the Gunners' new kit launch.

Italian sources suggest the Gunners are preparing a £27m bid to beat Monaco to the 23-year-old.

It has also been suggested that PUMA - who signed a long-term shirt sponsorship deal with Arsenal last season - could help fund the deal due to their endorsement deal with the Italian.

And fresh reports suggest that the German sportswear giants are pressuring Arsenal to get a deal done before July 10.

Arsenal shirt sales went up substantially following the capture of Mesut Ozil last summer and both club and sponsor believe Balotelli could have a similar impact this term.

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