Tottenham Hotspur have made the first move in an attempt to sign Andrea Pirlo when his contract with Juventus expires next summer, according to former Chelsea manager Gianluca Vialli.
The Italy international has played an integral role in the Bianconeri's last two Serie A winning seasons but the club are yet to enter negotiations regarding an extension, with the club's managing director Giuseppe Moratta suggesting they won't hold talks until early 2014.
Due to Juventus' reluctance to sign Pirlo down to a new contract as soon as possible, a number of Premier League sides have inevitably been linked with a move for the 34-year-old.
The Serie A champions are reportedly aware of interest from Manchester United and Arsenal but it would appear Spurs have made the first enquires into a possible free transfer next summer, according to Vialli.
Now a TV pundit, Vialli revealed to Sky Italia following Juventus' 3-2 win over Milan that the north London side have contacted the player - who will be free to negotiate a pre-contract deal with a new club in January - regarding a move to White Hart Lane.
"I got the rumours from London," Vialli said. "There are contacts between Andrea Pirlo and Tottenham for the nest season."
The Italy international left Milan in similar circumstances in 2011, when he chose to leave the Rossoneri at the end of his contract to join Juve.
While Antonio Conte's side are yet to hold talks with Pirlo regarding a new deal, the club appear confident of securing his services for at least another year.
When quizzed on Premier Leaguer interest in Pirlo - in addition to Leonardo Bonucci who has been linked with United - Moratta did not appear to be worried about such growing interest.
"On one hand it's nice to read or hear this because it means our players are good enough to be followed and observed by big clubs," Moratta was quoted as saying by Tutto Mercato Web last week.
"But we want to keep them close to us."
Having been left out of Conte's starting XI for the first time all season in last week's 1-0 win over Torino in the Turin derby, Pirlo again played a leading role in the Bianconeri's midfield on Sunday, scoring a free kick to help Juve clinch a 3-2 win over his former club Milan.