Dimitar Berbatov has emerged as a January transfer target for Serie A champions AC Milan who are keen to secure his signature in the New Year rather than wait until the end of the season when his contract expires.
The Bulgarian can leave Old Trafford on a free transfer at the end of the season, but Milan want to secure the services of the striker in the New Year after learning that Antonio Cassano will be sidelined for a number of months after having heart surgery.
Reports in the Italian media suggest that Milan would prefer to sign the 30-year-old striker rather than Dider Drogba and Nicolas Anelka who they have also been linked with.
The Chelsea duo are both out of contract in the summer and would also be available on a free transfer but Milan would prefer to make a move for a striker in January.
Milan vice president Adriano Galliani is a keen admirer of the former Tottenham striker who last season was United's top scorer with 20 Premier League goals.
However, this season Berbatov has fallen well behind the likes of Wayne Rooney, Javier Hernandez and Danny Welbeck. This has led many people to believe the striker will look elsewhere for regular first team football.
Sir Alex Ferguson has always stated that he would like to keep the striker but is aware that without being able to offer him regular football he may choose to leave.
Milan will hope that they can land the forward with a relatively low offer, knowing that United would rather make a slight return on the £30.75million they spent in 2008.