Liverpool have suffered a blow, as target Leon Goretzka has signed a pre-contract agreement with Bayern Munich, per The Mirror.
The 22-year-old Goretzka has emerged as one of the most highly rated young players in Europe and Jurgen Klopp had been hoping that he would choose Anfield as his next destination.
In addition to this, Barcelona and Juventus had also been interested in signing the German.
Goretzka has, however, opted to remain in the Bundesliga and will now link up with Bayern at the start of next season.
Schalke general manager Christian Heidel confirmed that Goretzka had rejected an offer to remain at the Veltins Arena and has signed a pre-contract agreement with Bayern.
“Leon informed us earlier in the week that he might leave the club and join Bayern,” said Heidel on Friday morning.
“Yesterday, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (Bayern CEO) informed us that Leon has passed the medical check.
“We’re losing a very, very good player. He has signed a contract from July 1 with Bayern. We did everything possible to keep Leon.
“In the summer, there was an agreement with him and his advisors, but he wanted to the wait and see how things developed.
“We can deal with the situation – it is not a total surprise. We are prepared for this. Now we have the rest of the season to think about possible solutions.”