Schalke are ready to make Leon Goretzka the highest paid player at the club in a bid to ward off interest from top European clubs – including Liverpool.
The Germany midfielder is one of the continent's most sought-after young players, and is into the last year of his current contract with the Bundesliga club.
Liverpool are among the clubs interested in signing the 22-year-old.
Schalke's sporting director Christian Heidel says the Gelsenkirchen outfit are ready to make Goretzka a big offer to keep him at the club – but admits the ball is now in the player's court.
“We go to the pain threshold,” Heidel said. “We have done everything to show Leon that he is extremely important to Schalke.
"For us, there were always two options: either his contract is extended or he remains here until 2018. It was never an issue for us. We believe that it is best for him to stay here. The ball is now with Leon.”
German newspaper Bild, meanwhile, says a decision over Goretzka's future is expected 'at the turn of the year' – but suggested that even if he were to sign a new deal with Schalke, it would contain a clause allowing him to leave if a Champions League club came in.
Source: Liverpool Echo
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