The Gunners tracked the Italian forward for much of transfer window, with reports suggesting that a deal was close to going through.
However, despite the club’s Puma kit connection – whom Balotelli is also linked with – a swoop never cam to fruition, and it now looks likely that the 24-year-old will become a Liverpool player.
The Reds yesterday agreed a £16m fee for the player, with a switch looking likely after ‘Mad Mario’ revealed that he expects to sign a contract at Anfield soon.
But even with Arsenal short of attacking cover, Clarke feels that the side he made seven outings for at the start of his career will not be too fussed about missing out on the former Manchester City star, who has a reputation for crazy off-field antics and questionable work-rate:
“I don’t think it’s a major disappointment at all to be honest.” He told talkSPORT. “He’s a good player, he’s a talent, but he’s also a little bit of a liability at times. I don’t think he turns it on enough,”
“I firmly believe if Arsene Wenger wanted him he would have been in for him much earlier in the summer. Good luck to him at Liverpool but I don’t think Arsenal will be too upset to have missed out.”