The playmaker only arrived at White Hart Lane in January, but already his chances of regular first-team football look slim.
Andre Villas-Boas used the funds from Gareth Bale’s world-record summer move to Real Madrid to fund a £100m overhaul of his squad, drafting in a number of big names players.
The likes of Nacer Chadli, Christian Eriksen, Paulinho, Etienne Capoue and Erik Lamela all moved to north London, and all occupy similar positions to Holtby.
Having spent much of pre-season injured, the 22-year-old appears to face a tough battle to push his way into AVB’s starting XI.
This has alerted former club Schalke.
The Bundesliga side sold Holtby to Tottenham for £1.4m earlier this year, a deal which was forced due to his contractual situation at the time.
As a part of the agreement a buy-back clause was negotiated, which could be activated this winter.
Should the required fee be met and Holtby be willing to return to Gelsenkirchen, then there is nothing Spurs could do to prevent the move.
The player himself has stated that he willing to stay, but he may have a change of heart if first-team opportunities are still limited after Christmas.
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