Gianluigi Buffon has lifted the lid on the offers he received to move to the Premier League, with Arsenal, Man Utd and Man City all having been interested.
The Juventus goalkeeper is still in fine fettle at 38 years old and remains the world’s most expensive goalkeeper following his move from Parma to Juve in 2001 for £32.6million.
Ahead of Juve’s Champions league clash with Bayern Munich on Tuesday, Buffon told BT Sport of the interest that came his way from English clubs at various stages of his career.
The first potential offer came from Arsenal, before Manchester United were sniffing when Peter Schmeichel had to be replaced in 1999.
Buffon said: “I remember when I was 20 years old in 1998 I had dinner once with Wenger from Arsenal.
“Then when I was at Parma, Manchester United definitely had their eyes on me for a long time with [Sir Alex] Ferguson.”
The Italy goalkeeper, though, says the most concrete proposal put to him came from Manchester City after the club’s Abu Dhabi takeover.
Buffon added: “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.”
— BT Sport Football (@btsportfootball) February 21, 2016