But now United and Spurs have emerged as prime candidates for his signature ahead of the coming transfer window.
Although he is a key player at the club, the Serie A side are resigned to losing their centre-back despite having rejected a recent £5m offer from Roma.
They are said to be looking for around £8m this summer even though a £12m move to Spartak Moscow fell through in 2012.
As it stands both English clubs are embroiled in managerial uncertainty, but it is rumoured that the duo’s boards are looking to get deals in place sooner rather than later.
United are said to have in excess of £150m to spend and are targeting a centre-back to replace the outgoing Nemanja Vidic.
Meanwhile Tottenham are also looking to strengthen the same area with the future of Jan Vertonghen far from clear.