Milan are interested in Schalke defender Kyriakos Papadopoulos but face stiff competition from Real Madrid and Anzhi Makhachkala.
The Greek central defender has become one of Europe’s hottest young prospects and, according to German paper Bild, fits the bill for Milan, who are still searching the transfer market to replace Thiago Silva.
The Rossoneri’s pursuit of 20-year-old Papadopoulos, however, could be derailed by the financial advantage that both Real and Anzhi will have.
Bild are reporting that oil-rich Russian club Anzhi are preparing a €10m offer and should Real be able to match that, then Milan would almost certainly be out of the race.
Schalke aren’t prepared to give up Papadopoulos without a fight and he could yet remain in Germany for another season because his contract runs until 2015.
Milan have been linked with a host of defenders since Thiago Silva left – most prominently Montpellier’s Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa.