West Ham United and Everton could be about to battle it out for Sassuolo centre-half Gian Marco Ferrari, according to reports.
Both clubs ended the last campaign short of genuine options at the heart of defence. So it should come as no surprise that the pair are in the market for the highly-rated 26-year-old.
Despite not playing a single match for parent club Sassuolo, Ferrari has shone during loan spells with Crotone and Sampdoria in the last two seasons.
The former Parma prodigy has made over 60 appearances in Serie A across the last 24 months. He saw his good form last season rewarded with a first-ever call-up to the Italian National Team in March.
He failed to make the pitch in matches against Argentina and England. But his presence in the squad evidences the high regard in which he is held at both club and international level.
And it’s his physical presence which makes Ferrari such an enticing prospect for both Hammers and Toffees fans.
The 6ft 2in star is the sort of old school defender who is willing to put his body on the line for his team.
His ability to read one-on-one situations is also a vital part of his game, alongside his willingness to mop up on the recovery if one of his teammates makes a mistake.
He has the presence of mind to play the ball, too.
With Manuel Pellegrini and Marco Silva both likely to want to play out from the back next season, that could prove a key factor when it comes to making an approach for the Italian powerhouse.
And the good news for messrs David Gold, David Sullivan and Farhad Mosri, is that if they do want to make a move for the centre-half, they probably won’t have to break the bank.
The centre-half target is rumoured to be available for around £7-10m. That makes him just about the first ever value for money Ferrari on the market.
All Odds and Markets correct as of date of publication