AC Milan president Silvio Berlusconi fuelled further rumours last night by confirming his interest in the 22-year- old ahead of a Champions League defeat to Zenit St Petersburg.
When asked to comment on rumours of a mooted bid for Balotelli (left) in January, he told Sky Sport Italia: "No, it's not a dream. I never dream."
But the City forward's agent, Mino Raiola, was quick to diffuse talk of a big money move, saying Milan could not afford his client.
"No Italian club would be able to afford him," he said. "Balotelli is as valuable as the Mona Lisa.
"And City have been very clear -- they don't want to sell."
Milan head coach Massimiliano Allegri is a confirmed admirer and hinted he would like to see Balotelli play alongside Rossoneri youngster Stephan El Shaarawy, who has scored 14 goals in all competitions this season.
Allegri said: "I think they have done great things with the Italian national team.
"(Balotelli) is a great player with extraordinary physical and technical qualities.
"However, given his qualities, I believe he has thrown away a few years of his career."