Horst Heldt and Arsene Wenger say one thing, the German press and Julian Draxler say another.
Schalke general manager Horst Heldt denied all bids for Julian Draxler, and Arsene Wenger decried Arsenal's interest as a media invention.
"The Draxler situation has been created by the newspapers, not by me. He will stay at Schalke," he said on deadline day.
Yet his comments are looking increasingly unreliable, given the fallout over the weekend.
Julian Draxler himself told Sky Germany: "‘I want to go and had a good offer to leave, but the Schalke manager Horst Heldt said no to the transfer and would not let me go."
And now German newspaper BILD have weighed in, claiming:
"According to BILD's information Arsenal offered about 36 million euros to bring (in) Draxler shortly before the transfer deadline to London."
Schalke GM Heldt back-tracked over the weekend and Draxler's comments, admitting: "(On) Thursday received an offer for Julian, but only in the afternoon. We have clearly told him that we do not do that."
The German side were well within their rights to do so. Draxler's release clause is nine million Euros higher than Arsenal's offer, so it would make sense for the club to hold out until then to see if they receive a higher bid.
Bundesliga pundit Jan-Aage Fjortoft claimed over the weekend that Bayern Munich had involved themselves, indicating to Schalke they would bid for the 20-year-old in the summer.
We'll never know whether Schalke would have accepted a higher offer for Draxler this January, and that may be a query Arsenal live to regret not finding out for themselves.
With Schalke facing Champions League glamour clashes against Real Madrid home and away this month, it's the perfect stage for Draxler to prove his ability, but also attract even more admirers ahead of the summer.
image: © DerHans04
Have something to tell us about this article?