Arsenal's hopes of signing Julian Draxler were reportedly dashed when Bayern Munich revealed they would bid for the Schalke starlet during the summer.
As reported by Germany-based pundit Jan Aage Fjortoft, Pep Guardiola's side may have had a direct impact on Draxler's potential North London switch by notifying their Bundesliga rivals a substantial fee will be paid at the conclusion of the current campaign:
My view. Based on my information. Bayern Munich managed to stop the Draxler-deal by saying "we take him in the summer".— Jan Aage Fjortoft (@JanAageFjortoft) February 1, 2014
Horst Heldt, Schalke's sporting director, also suggested another club could be circling the 20-year-old's talents. The outspoken professional revealed Schalke turned down a bid that "came from a club to the north of us," as noted by John Drayton of the Daily Mail:
"It had the dimension of a transfer that you don't do any day of the week," said Heldt. "It was certainly a decent offer, but it wasn't sufficient for us. We told Julian our opinion, and that was that."
While this rules out an offer from Arsenal, it also confirms a concrete bid did not come from Bayern during the recently-closed window. Teams to the north of Gelsenkirchen include Werder Bremen, Hamburg and Wolfsburg, while a Russian side could also be in the running.
Drayton suggests Wolfsburg could have launched an attempt to replace the outgoing Diego, who headed back to Atletico Madrid, but it's unlikely the club would have sanctioned a deal of around £37 million to replace the Brazilian playmaker.
Arsenal fans will certainly be disappointed to witness a lack of action from Wenger.
Will Arsenal regret not signing Julian Draxler?
It seems Draxler was for the taking in January and would have been offered to any club that met his buyout clause. The versatile midfielder, whose smart passing game and powerful dribbling skills would slot right in at the Emirates, is now likely to capture the attention of many after this summer's World Cup.
Worryingly for Arsenal, Heldt's claim of receiving a significant bid suggests more can be expected in the summer. With four goals and five assists in 20 games across the Bundesliga and Champions League this season, Draxler will be a wanted man when the next transfer window opens, per WhoScored.com.
Instead of landing a player who could represent the centre of Arsenal's play for the next decade, an aging Kim Kallstrom was added to the squad.
Wenger confirmed the Swede will be out for around "four to six weeks," per Jeremy Wilson of The Telegraph, while also suggesting he wouldn't have signed the player if he had more time.
Mishaps like this could shape Arsenal's season.
If the Gunners fail to land silverware this year, the decision to let Draxler remain at Schalke will undoubtedly be underlined as a major failing from the French boss, who had a month to do business, just like everybody else.