Sampdoria president Massimo Ferrero claims he is trying to sign Chelsea centre-half Kurt Zouma.
The Serie A side are in the process of looking for a new manager after Sinisa Mihajlovic confirmed his departure, with AC Milan or Napoli likely destinations for the Serbian boss.
According to Ferrero, who was speaking at a book presentation on Wednesday evening (3 June), Walter Zenga will be brought in as Mihajlovic's replacement with 21-year-old Zouma central to his plans to build a side with a formidable physical presence.
"I spoke to Jurgen Klopp, Roberto di Matteo, Unai Emery and Maurizio Sarri," Ferrero said. "They explained that they wanted to play great football, but I have a physical side and want the people Zenga talked to me about.
"I chose Zenga because he wanted to come back to Italy and already knows the Sampdoria environment.
"I already signed Niklas Moisander from Ajax and I am trying to get Zouma, because they are very physical players."
It seems unlikely however that Chelsea will entertain offers for a player highly rated by Jose Mourinho at Stamford Bridge. Zouma, already a full France international, signed for the club in January 2014 and while the Blues boss has experimented with the player in a holding midfield role, he has identified him as the long-term successor to John Terry.
"They [Terry and Zouma] are different players. Sometimes you get replicas of players," Mourinho said in March.
"Other times you can't do it, and if you can't Zouma now is 20, so one day Zouma will be 23 or 24 and will be a player of great maturity and probably leadership, too, to replace John.
"Zouma is playing more than I expected, more than he expected, more than everyone expected. So he's getting very important experience."
Mourinho has also described Zouma and Real Madrid and France defender Raphael Varane as the best young defenders in the world.