FC Schalke 04 have acceded that Arsenal and Chelsea target Julian Draxler could leave the club at the end of the season, but say that the 20 year-old is not for sale in January.
The Gelsenkirchen side find out their draw for the UEFA Champions League on Monday, and manager Horst Heldt is adamant that Draxler will play a part – with the first leg of the last sixteen clashes to take place in February.
“Julian will play in the second round [of the Champions League]” Heldt was quoted as telling Goal.com – with the clear implication that he would not be sold in the mid season transfer window.
That corroborates what Draxler himself has said.
“Schalke have no intention to sell me and my exit clause only takes effect in the summer,” said Draxler, who hinted particularly strongly that an Arsenal transfer could be on the cards.
“I have always said English teams are very big clubs and Arsenal is of course one of them,” continued the skilful attacking midfielder.
“Of course I sometimes speak to [Arsenal players] Mesut [Ozil] or Per [Mertesacker] about the team, about the club, and they always have good words and they tell me nice things.
“You never know what happens in the summer but Arsenal is a very, very nice team. They always have very young players, they play attractive football and that’s what I like.”
Chelsea too have been regularly linked with a move for Draxler, with Kevin De Bruyne reportedly included in part exchange in their likely transfer bid.