Manchester United have suffered a blow in their pursuit of signing Julian Draxler. The German international has left Schalke and completed a move to Vfl Wolfsburg on Monday, 31 August.
Louis van Gaal's side were keen on landing either Bayern Munich star Thomas Muller, or treble winner and Barcelona star Neymar and Real Madrid's Gareth Bale. However, failure to secure any of these players forced the Dutchman to look elsewhere.
The Telegraph reported the 21-year-old midfielder had turned down the opportunity to sign a new deal at Schalke. United were hoping to lure Draxler to England as van Gaal identified him as a cheaper alternative to Muller. However, Draxler has completed a move to Wolfsburg and signed a five-year deal.
"Emotionally speaking, it was a hard decision for the Royal Blues. Financially, it takes Schalke 04 to another level - Julian Draxler has completed his transfer to VfL Wolfsburg. The Germany international has signed a five-year contract at the Lower Saxony club until 2020," a statement on Schalke's official website read.
Wolfsburg allowed Kevin De Bruyne to complete a move to Manchester City on 30 August. Draxler will replace the former Chelsea man at the club. The Guardian reports the German international move to Wolfsburg has seen them pay a club-record fee of €35m (£25.5m, $39.3m).
Schalke general manager Horst Heldt refused to reveal the fee involved in the transfer. However, he hinted the offer made by Wolfsburg was hard resist as it was the biggest transfer they have received so far.
"There are two reasons for our decision to accept Wolfsburg's offer: We will not be disclosing information about the transfer fee, but we can say that it is the biggest amount we've received for a player at Schalke. Moreover, we have complied with Julian's desire to move to another club," Heldt explained.