Italy legend confirms previous Arsenal and Man United interest

Italy legend Gianluigi Buffon has confirmed that three Premier League clubs tried to sign him in the past, according to reports from the Daily Mail.

The Juventus star has been one of the best goalkeepers in world football for almost two decades, with Buffon still holding the record as the most expensive shot-stopper when he signed for the Bianconeri in 2001 from Parma via a £33million transfer.

However, before his move to Juve, Buffon was a subject of interest for Arsenal and Manchester United, with Gunners boss Arsene Wenger even taking him to dinner when he was just 20 years old.

And the 38-year-old revealed that in 2007, Manchester City were keen on bringing him over to start their new project to dominate English football.

“I remember when I was 20 years old in 1998 I had dinner once with Wenger from Arsenal,” he told BT Sport.

“Then when I was at Parma, Manchester United definitely had their eyes on me for a long time with Ferguson.

“Let’s say that the most serious and direct approach I had was from Manchester City.

“They wanted to start their adventure by signing two or three more renowned players and I was one of them. That was 2007 or 2008 roughly. However, nothing came of it for various reasons.”

But Buffon stayed with Juve, helping the club to six Serie A titles, one Coppa Italia, and winning the FIFA World Cup in 2006 with the Italian national team.