FC Schalke 04 ace Julian Draxler has refused to rule out a future move to Bayern Munich, citing the example of Manuel Neuer, who joined Bayern from Schalke in a deal worth €22 million in the summer of 2011.
The Germany international, 20, is under contract at the Veltins-Arena until 30 June 2018 after penning an extension last year but has a buy-out clause of €45.5 million in his current deal.
Draxler remains undecided regarding his long-term future in Gelsenkirchen. However, he feels the release clause in the deal is a good thing for both sides, himself and the club, and reasonably so.
“I extended my contract because I feel fine here and the long-term deal shows the appreciation and popularity I enjoy at Schalke,” said Draxler.
“It’s no secret that I have a get-out clause in the contract and so from year to year, the possibility exists, at least to think about what is best for my development.
“Of course, the clause leaves a lot of room for speculation, but it is also good for both sides.
“It’s good for Schalke because the club does not have to let go of me on the cheap and, in their worst-case scenario, they would still get a lot of money for me.
“And for me it’s good because I can make my own decision if a club decides to pay 45 million euros for me and I want a new challenge.”
A host of top European clubs are reportedly interested in Draxler, with the bookmakers suggesting Arsenal (1/2), Bayern (9/2) and Manchester United (6/1) are among the favourites to land the 20-year-old.
Earlier this month, Schalke chairman Clemens Tonnies seemed quite confident Draxler would not join the Bundesliga champions in the summer but the player’s latest comments may have him worried.
“I’d prefer not to comment on all those rumours,” added Draxler.
“Look at what happened with Manuel Neuer. He was 100 per cent convinced that he would never join FC Bayern but, after having played as a pro for five years, time made him change his opinion.
“I also can’t say what I will think in five or six or maybe even 10 years.
“And when you rule something out entirely and you end up playing where most people don’t want you to be, the outcry is huge.”
Draxler, who is expected to start when Schalke host Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday night, has tallied four goals and six assists in 23 appearances for Die Königsblauen this season.