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The Italy Under-21 international striker is said to be frustrated with his limited first-team opportunities at the San Siro...

According to a report in the British tabloid The Daily Mirror, Premier League outfit West Ham United are hoping to secure a loan-deal for Inter's Mario Balotelli.

It is thought that Hammers boss Gianfranco Zola attempted to land the 18-year-old during the January transfer window, but was unsuccessful.

The east London based club are set to renew their interest in the 6ft 2in striker in the hope of acquiring his services for the 2009-10 campaign.

Apparently, the highly-rated youngster is growing impatient at his lack of first-team opportunities at the San Siro.

Balotelli made 22 Serie A appearances for the Nerazzurri last season, scoring eight goals. In addition, he also netted once in six Champions League games.

The Palermo-born forward is currently on international duty with the Italy Under-21 squad at the U-21 European Championships, where he has experienced a mixture of emotions. He bagged the first goal of the game against Sweden on Friday before being sent off for kicking-out at an opponent.

West Ham are also trying to snap-up Chile international midfielder Luis Jimenez on loan from Il Biscione.

Ricky Brooks,