Florence mayor Renzi emerges as surprise candidate for Italy PM

ROME (Reuters) - Silvio Berlusconi's centre-right indicated on Tuesday that it would consider backing the young centre-left mayor of Florence Matteo Renzi as Italian prime minister after his name was suggested by the centre-left Democratic Party (PD).

Renzi, 38, who opinion polls indicate as the country's most popular politician, was not even considered in the frame of possible candidates until late on Monday when he was proposed by PD executive member Matteo Orfini.

"The People of Freedom (PDL) is not in principle against the candidacy of Renzi," a parliamentary source frfromonm Berlusconi's party told Reuters.

Delegations from the PDL and the PD will meet separately with President Giorgio Napolitano on Tuesday to make their proposals for who should lead the country following February's inconclusive election.

It remains to be seen if Napolitano, who was widely expected to appoint former prime minister Giulio Amato, will heed their advice.

(Reporting by Francesca Piscioneri; writing by Gavin Jones; editing by James Mackenzie)