Julian Draxler Discusses Bayern Munich, Barcelona or Real Madrid Transfers

Tom SunderlandFeatured ColumnistFebruary 25, 2014

Schalke's Julian Draxler celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during the Champions League group E soccer match between FC Schalke 04 and FC Basel in Gelsenkirchen, Germany, Wednesday, Dec.11,2013. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
Frank Augstein/Associated Press

Julian Draxler has refused to rule out his chances of moving to one of Europe's giants this summer, discussing the finer details of his contract at the Veltins-Arena and what it means for his future.

Ahead of Schalke's Champions League encounter with Real Madrid on Wednesday night, the playmaker spoke to WAZ (h/t ESPNFC.com's Stephan Uersfeld), saying:

Barcelona and Real Madrid have the most illustrious names in world football, but that does not necessarily mean that I want to join them now or that I don’t want to stay at Schalke or head into a different direction first. The most attractive football right now is being played in Spain, while England, for me, has the best league in the world.

If I were to start thinking about what might happen after the World Cup, I could forget about those two targets.

Draxler has become one of the most sought-after prospects in European football, enjoying a meteoric rise to Bundesliga prominence, not to mention in Europe.

And the attacking midfielder uses the example of one who grew up in similar circumstances, international teammate and former Schalke disciple Manuel Neuer, as a blueprint for what may come to pass during his career:

I’d prefer not to comment on all those rumours. Look at what happened with Manuel Neuer. He was 100 percent 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.

During the January transfer window, it was alleged that an unnamed club had made an approach for the prodigy, with club sporting director Horst Heldt reported by ESPNFC.com as confirming that "there was a request."

Frank Augstein/Associated Press

Bayern could eventually become the home of Draxler's services, the latest in a long line of emerging German talent that Der FCB would love to see in the Allianz Arena.

WhoScored show precisely how effective the player has been in league competition this season:

Draxler has been anything but shy in recent months regarding his chances of a move away from the Veltins-Arena, giving the impression that his allegiances are most certainly for sale but simply at Schalke's valuation.

This season, the 20-year-old has found his progress slightly stunted by injury, not to mention that he's been played mostly on the left wing instead of his favoured central playmaking role.

Regardless, Draxler has maintained his reputation as one of Europe's brightest gems, and the powers of Spain, England and Germany could soon come calling for his €45.5 million name.