The giant German centre half has been watched by numerous top European clubs including Real Madrid and Inter Milan, so Schalke are understandably desperate to tie him down to a long term deal.
Arsenal and Manchester United were interested in the Germany international before last summer whereas Liverpool’s interest is fresher with Brendan Rodgers looking to revamp his back four.
After holding preliminary discussions with the Bundesliga club over extending his current contract, the 24-year-old has decided to put off any more negotiations until at least the summer.
Despite still having 18 months left on his current deal, Schalke may look to sell their captain in January as his value will depreciate the closer he gets to his contract expiry date and he could currently be worth a small fortune to them.
[cat_link cat=”arsenal” type=”grid”]