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Balotelli eyes £4.75m ‘Telly Tubby’ mansion

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Madcap footballer Mario Balotelli has been linked with the purchase of an extravagant £4.75m ‘Teletubbies’ mansion after he moved back to the Premier League.

The £16m striker, who signed for Liverpool recently, is rumoured to be interested in the Cheshire property, complete with its own swimming pool, football pitch and helipad.

Current owner, the entrepreneur Steve O’Connor and his wife Clare have insisted that the property remains on the market with Chester estate agents Savills.

The home, in Frodsham, includes five bedrooms, four of which are described as suites, as well as an indoor swimming pool, sauna, gym sports hall, sports bar, offices, a helipad and large gardens.

Much of the property is built below ground, with grassed roofs covering the property, and windows reminiscent of the Teletubbies home in the children’s TV show.

Balotelli, 24, is known to be house hunting in the area after returning to the country after starring for Inter and AC Milan in Italy. He played for Manchester City between 2010 and 2013 earning as much interest in his off-the field antics and his exploits on the pitch.

The property is described on the estate agent’s website as ‘a discreet and private house, perfectly aligned to contemporary living, in a stunning position’.

It reads: ‘It embraces the functional aspects of neo modern architecture and key attributes of modern technology to provide a versatile and comfortable living environment.

‘The relaxed, free-flowing nature of the property belies the sophistication of the design. A substantial section of the property lies beneath the original ground level and yet the light, air quality and views are exceptional.

‘The fully integrated technology includes keyless doors, some with fingerprint recognition, an audio/visual system supporting various satellite feeds, lutron lighting both mechanical and natural climate control.

‘There are both large and small spaces within the structure, with the main living area being largely open plan. The leisure facilities are exceptional and range from an indoor sports hall to a gym, indoor pool with a sauna and jacuzzi, to an outdoor 3G surfaced 5-aside football pitch.’

The enormous estate, carved into a cliffside, started life as a two-storey cottage.

Despite heavy planning restrictions, the couple worked closely with an architect to transform their home into something 10 times the size. The house is surrounded by a network of caves which help control the temperature.

And thanks to the addition of a helipad, the couple and their two sons Stevie, nine, and Ryan, four, can get to London in an hour.

O’Connor, who owns Widnes Viking Rugby League team, said: ‘It is essentially a modern day country house in size, but if you took out our indulgence, the swimming pool, it would have the same energy costs as a three bed semi.’

Temperature in the home is controlled using a unique air tower which releases hot air in the top and lets in cold air at the bottom.

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