EXCLUSIVE By Pete O’Rourke
Schalke are lining up a £10million-plus bid for Cardiff City winger Josh Murphy, Football Insider can reveal.
The Bundesliga big hitters are keen to land the 24-year-old and continue the exodus of youthful British stars to the German top division.
A source with knowledge of Schalke’s recruitment plans has told Football Insider that new Schalke manager David Wagner has made Murphy his number one target this summer.
The ex-Huddersfield Town boss is a big admirer of Murphy despite his mixed debut campaign at Cardiff after signing from Norwich City 12 months ago for £11million.
Cardiff would be reluctant to lose Murphy after just one season, but they accept they face a battle to keep hold of their best players after dropping out of the Premier League.
The former England Under-20 international started 22 Premier League matches among 30 appearances in all competitions for the Bluebirds last season, scoring three goals and supplying two assists.
Schalke are looking to add their attacking options for next season and Murphy’s speed and versatility in that he can play anywhere across the frontline makes him an attractive proposition.
There has also been interest in Murphy in recent months from Crystal Palace and Burnley, but Schalke are poised to make the first move for the Norwich academy product.
In other Cardiff City news, it can be REVEALED that the club are in a battle with Rangers and Derby County to sign a 6ft 3in defensive colossus.