According to Italian outlet La Repubblica (h/t Mundo Deportivo, via the Mirror's Jack Rathborn), Milan will soon make a bid for the Croatia international, who is hoping to leave Madrid to gain more regular first-team football.
The English trio are also said to be keeping a keen eye on Kovacic's situation. As are former side Inter Milan.
The Premier League sides have until August 9 to secure a deal for Kovacic before the transfer window shuts, while the Milan duo have until August 18.
Kovacic won't come cheap, though, as Real value him at €60 million (£53 million).
Per sports journalist Mootaz Chehade, the Red Devils have met that price tag, but the player decided against a move:
According to La Repubblica's report, Kovacic favours a return to Serie A, where he impressed as a youngster to earn his move to Madrid.
The 24-year-old would surely be a key player for either the Nerazzurri or the Rossoneri. In the Spanish capital, he is behind Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Casemiro in the pecking order, and as such he started just 21 games in all competitions.
Were he to sign for Milan, he would continue to strengthen a spine that has been significantly improved this summer, per football writer Liam Canning:
Likewise, the prospect of Kovacic lining up alongside Radja Nainngolan and international team-mate Marcelo Brozovic at Inter is a mouthwatering one.
Kovacic's preference may come into play—he might be eager to rejoin his former side, or he may be open to joining their bitter rivals.
Ultimately, though, it will likely come down to whether either side have the resources to meet Real's demands and pay his wages after completing their other summer business.