Borussia Dortmund midfielder Ilkay Gundogan looks set to snub alleged transfer interest from Manchester United by penning a new deal with the Bundesliga giants after hinting that talks over an extension to his current contract are already underway.
The Germany international has been heavily linked with a possible move to Old Trafford at the end of the season as Red Devils boss Louis van Gaal continues his search for reinforcements ahead of the summer transfer window.
However, the Dutchman's hopes of securing the 24-year-old's signature appear to be fading following recent comments made by Gundogan in an interview with German newspaper Bild that intimate discussions with senior chiefs at the Westfalenstadion are progressing well.
"I don't want to say anything about it," he was quoted saying by the Daily Mirror. "[But] things are looking good."
Gundogan has only recently returned to Jurgen Klopp's first-team squad after spending almost 14 months on the sidelines with a serious back injury. He made his return back in October, and after a modest start is now starting to rediscover some of his best form.
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Dortmund officials are now eager to tie the Turkish-born star down to a new contract after he received admiring glances from a host of potential suitors. Having successfully convinced Marco Reus to commit himself to the club long-term, it now looks as though Gundogan's future is a top priority.
Reus' renewal came as a bit of a surprise considering the calibre of clubs keen to lure the playmaker from Signal Iduna Park, particularly when you take into account the disastrous start to the 2014/15 campaign that Dortmund experienced.
Just a few games ago Klopp's side were languishing near the foot of the Bundesliga table, but after three consecutive victories - the most recent of which came against Stuttgart at the weekend - the club is now up to 12th place as they begin to stave off the threat of relegation from the top-flight.
Unbelievably, whilst Dortmund's domestic form has been so poor, they remain competitive in the Champions League after advancing to the knockout stage where they await a two-legged last 16 clash against Serie 'A' leaders Juventus.
Big players for big games...
The first instalment of that tie takes place in Turin tomorrow evening, and BVB will be looking for a positive result to give themselves the best possible chance of progressing to the quarter-finals.
Keeping hold of players like Reus and Gundogan will give Dortmund the best possible chance of remaining a permanent fixture in Europe's elite club competition, and that's why they are looking to make sure the Manchester United target stays put beyond 2016 when his existing deal expires.
Manchester United fans: What chance do you think Louis van Gaal has of luring Ilkay Gundogan to Old Trafford? Who would you like to see the club sign instead? Share your thoughts below...