Top of Liverpool’s list of targets this summer, Mario Gotze is yet to discuss a move away from Bayern Munich, says chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.
Gotze is widely reported as a key target for the Reds as Jurgen Klopp moulds his squad for the 2016/17 campaign, with Liverpool looking to seal a deal worth around £20 million.
The 23-year-old is likely to leave Bayern at the end of the season, as he enters the final year of his contract with no extension forthcoming.
Given Gotze’s strong relationship with Klopp from their time together at Borussia Dortmund, a move to Merseyside seems probable.
But addressing reports of Gotze leaving Bayern, Rummenigge revealed that he is yet to speak with Gotze, or the players’ representatives, saying “everything is speculation” at this stage.
“The length of his contract is known,” he explained.
“I don’t know any more. Neither he nor his advisor have stated anything publicly. So everything is speculation.
“We are at the end of the season, in which the titles are won.
“The team have worked and remain focused for the whole season, so that we can win the titles.
“And we have enough time after that to talk with him about his future if he wants to.”
Rummenigge is rightly focussing on Bayern’s quest for Bundesliga and Champions League glory at the business end of 2015/16, as Pep Guardiola looks to end his spell at the Allianz Arena on a high.
Gotze has recently returned from injury, and has started Bayern’s last two league games, assisting Franck Ribery’s winner in a 1-0 victory at home to Eintracht Frankfurt at the beginning of April.
This is largely due to injury to key winger Arjen Robben, however, and despite a change in manager this summer, Gotze still seems likely to depart.
The likes of Jerome Boateng, Thomas Muller and Javi Martinez have all signed new contracts with the club this season, while talks are ongoing regarding an extension for Robert Lewandowski.
But as Carlo Ancelotti builds for the 2016/17 campaign, Gotze remains on the periphery.
Rummenigge’s words serve to stall talks between Liverpool, Bayern and Gotze until the end of the season, with the Bundesliga giants looking to avoid unrest.
This denies Liverpool of the possibility of securing a deal before the end of the season, but according to reports on Monday night, the Reds remain “confident” of signing the World Cup winner.