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Schalke give Arsenal hope over Draxler

ESPN staff
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Schalke chairman Clemens Toennies has ruled out the prospect of Julian Draxler moving to Bayern Munich and admitted the midfielder is unlikely to see out his contract.

Draxler, 20, was strongly linked with a switch to Arsenal during the January transfer window, with reports of a late bid for him confirmed by Schalke sporting director Horst Heldt last weekend.

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The player, who is said to have a £37 million buyout clause which could be triggered in the summer, has also been connected with a move to Bayern.

Toennies told Sport1: "We will not be able to keep a super talent like Julian in the long run... [but] I can rule out 100% that Julian Draxler wants to go to Bayern."

Draxler's contract runs until 2018 and his club have confirmed the interest of Arsenal, who ended up signing the injured Kim Kallstrom on loan instead.

"I can confirm that there was a request. It had the dimension of a transfer that you don't do any day of the week," Heldt said after Schalke's 2-1 victory over Wolfsburg on Saturday. "It was a decent deal, but insufficient for us to accept."

While Heldt did not give away which club made the offer for Draxler, revealing only "it came from a club up north", Der Westen suggested that he was referring to an English club, most likely Arsenal.

On his Twitter account, pundit Jan Aage Fjortoft claimed that Bayern will now enter the race for Schalke.

But the strong hint that Draxler is not keen on signing for the German giants may be seen as encouragement for Arsenal to return to negotiations in the summer.

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