Manuel Neuer has dismissed claims that he has already chosen to move to Bayern Munich ahead of Manchester United.
However, the Germany goalkeeper is ready to play his suitors off each other after calling on Schalke to make him an improved contract offer.
The 24-year-old is enjoying a rich vein of personal form, which has helped Schalke show signs that they can mix it with the best in Germany and fulfil his ambition.
'I assume that next season I'll play for Schalke,' he said after inspiring his side to a 1-0 win at high-flying Mainz on Saturday. 'As soon as Schalke make me an offer, I'll talk first to Schalke.'
However, with his current deal set to run till the end of next season, he warned: 'Nothing is certain.'
Reports in Germany at the end of the last week claimed a move to Bayern was sewn up, but the Bavarian giants' sporting director Christian Nerlinger insisted at the weekend: 'We have never discussed the issue of Neuer.'
Fans' favourite: Neuer takes the plaudits after a win last week at Benfica
There is little doubt that the German champions' interest in Neuer is genuine, but the club are wary that boss Louis van Gaal wants to give 22-year-old Thomas Kraft a chance to prove he can step up.
Sir Alex Ferguson is keen on Neuer as a replacement for Holland veteran Edwin van der Sar after indicating that Denmark international Anders Lindegaard won't be the only new arrival between the posts.
But United are also watching other targets and Schalke's turn of form could convince Neuer to stay put.
A second-place finish in the Bundesliga provided Champions League this season and wins on the bounce against Bayern and Mainz has catapulted them from the edge of the relegation zone to the top half of the table.
Neuer offered massive pay hike to snub Man United and stay with SchalkeGirl trouble could see United target Neuer choose Munich over Manchester EXCLUSIVE: Fergie eyes Germany 'keeper Neuer for his new No 1MANCHESTER UNITED FC