Goretkza, 22, is in the final year of his contract at the Veltins-Arena and will be free to negotiate a pre-contract agreement with foreign suitors as of 1 January. The Bundesliga side have not given up hope of convincing the midfielder to sign a new deal however and hope a club record offer of £10.7m-a-year will convince him to stay.
But European football's heavyweights have other ideas with officials from Barcelona meeting with the Germany international during the most recent international break to discuss a move next summer. Juventus chief executive Beppe Marotta has also confirmed his side will make a play for the midfielder, with Arsenal and Manchester United the two Premier League sides credited with the strongest interest.
Schalke will not cash in Goretzka during the mid-season transfer window but they anticipate clubs will begin to formally reach out to their midfielder as of 1 January. And CEO Christian Heidel hopes that by that point, Goretkza will have already made his final decision over whether Schalke have a chance of retaining him.
"Although we have set no time, I believe that Leon will decide in the winter," Heidel said," Ruhr Nachrichten report. "It seems to be so that other clubs are interested and they will not wait until June 29 [when Goretzka's contract expires]. The positive development the team is currently undergoing will certainly not worsen our situation."
Schalke take on Eintracht Frankfurt on 16 December before the Christmas break, returning to action away to RB Leipzig on 13 January.
Should Goretzka leave, it will be the second summer running Schalke have lost an influential player on a free transfer following Sead Kolašinac's move to Arsenal this summer. Following that exit, the club were faced with accusations they did not do enough to keep the defender at the club, one Schalke are now even more determined to dispute through their lucrative contract offer for Goretzka.
According to Bild, Schalke's are keen to ensure history does not to repeat itself and hope their record-breaking offer – which will shatter the club's current wage structure – will dispel any doubts over their ambition.
But Barcelona and Arsenal will hope the lure of playing in La Liga or the Premier League will have the final say on the matter.