May 3, 2013, 6:30 PM EDT
With playmaker Mario Götze having made the infamous switch from Borussia Dortmund to Bayern Munich, Jurgen Klopp will have to look elsewhere to replace the young star.
Schalke youngster Julian Draxler has squashed speculation that he would become Götze’s replacement, telling Germany’s Die Welt, “I can promise once and for all: I will not play for Borussia Dortmund. I will also not be making a move to Dortmund next season.”
The 19-year old specified that playing for his hometown is of the utmost importance. “I think anybody that knows me knows I’m from here” said Draxler. “And from the beginning I can only shake my head at this talk.” Draxler has been in Schalke’s youth system since he was just 7 years old.
This comes on the heels of Schalke’s sporting director Horst Heldt revealing Draxler has no release clause in his contract, the likes of which doomed Dortmund’s hopes of retaining Götze. Heldt said, “There is no sale clause in the contract, so we do not have to sell him. I feel that Julian is excellent here and has everything to his liking. He is fast becoming the face of Schalke.”
This show of loyalty will provide a major boost as Schalke continue their push for constant European competition. They’re in a tight battle for the 3rd and 4th spots in the Bundesliga, which provide Champions League prizes into the group stage and qualifying stage respectively.
Draxler’s contributions in the attacking midfield have been a big part of Schalke’s success as they continue their challenge at the top of the table this year. He has started 29 league matches, scoring 9 goals and assisting 4 others. In fact, he scored the only goal, a late one, in Schalke’s 1-0 win over Borussia Moenchengladbach earlier today.
He’s been instrumental in their Champions League success this year as well. Draxler scored a goal and assisted another as Schalke topped Group B over the likes of Arsenal, Olympiacos, and Montpellier.
It wouldn’t be surprising to see Draxler, who already has 4 German international senior caps to his name, at an even bigger club in the near future. But at the moment, Dortmund will be required to find someone a little less loyal to fill the hole left by the €37 million departure of Götze.
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