Report: Arsenal and Tottenham enter race to sign Barcelona midfield target
What's the story?
According to reports, Premier League sides Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal are in the race for Schalke 04 midfielder Leon Goretzka. The Mirror claim that the 22-year-old has attracted interest from both north London clubs who are looking to recruit midfield reinforcements.
The German international has already been linked with La Liga side FC Barcelona with a deal reportedly agreed to bring him to the Camp Nou next year.
In case you didn't know...
Schalke's inability to extend player contracts will come back to bite them again as Goretzka will be a free agent at the end of the season. That means he is free to sign a pre-contract with any club in January 2018.
A host of top clubs have been linked with the player who has made nearly 130 appearances for Die Knappen, including Juventus and Bayern Munich (surprise, surprise).
The heart of the matter
"We are trying to convince him, also financially," said club's sporting director, Christian Heidel. "We are trying to look for the best way to convince him to stay, but without putting pressure on him."
The club have done everything in their power to retain the 6'2" midfielder but he has already set his sights on bigger and better things.
Arsenal have already signed Sead Kolasinac for free from Schalke and signing Goretzka would represent a major coup.
On the other hand, if Mauricio Pochettino convinces him to move to White Hart Lane, it would boost Spurs' chances of becoming serious contenders in both England and Europe.
Video: How good is Goretzka?
There's no team in the world that would decline the chance to sign Goretzka. The youngster has it all - a physical midfielder who is strong in the air and on the ground, not afraid to go into tackles, shoots from distance and has an eye for the occasional long ball over the defence.
However, a move to the Premier League looks unlikely at this stage unless he is attracted by the project and higher wages. Should he leave Schalke, it will only be for Bundesliga rivals Bayern Munich or the sunny weather in Barcelona.