This story has been reproduced from today's media. It does not necessarily represent the position of Liverpool Football Club.
Schalke defender Benedikt Howedes has shelved contract renewal talks for the time being - which could tempt Premier League suitors into enquiring about him.
Manchester United and Arsenal have been linked with the centre-back in the past while Liverpool were rumoured to be interested in him last summer.
Howedes became captain of Schalke in 2011 and has been at the club for the duration of his senior career, having signed professional terms in 2007.
Along with the likes of Neven Subotic and Mats Hummels at champions Borussia Dortmund, Howedes is rated as one of the best defenders in the Bundesliga and his performances have been watched by Premier League scouts.
The 24-year-old Germany international has a contract with Schalke until 2014 and the club are eager to get him to sign an extension.
Initial talks were held but they failed to find a resolution and now Howedes has decided to end discussions until the end of the season at the earliest.
The news is likely to alert the likes of United, Arsenal and Liverpool but Schalke remain adamant the player will sign and his decision to postpone talks is a result of his desire to focus on the rest of the season.