Schalke boss Felix Magath expects Ivan Rakitic to pen a new deal, but his agent is keeping the door ajar.
The Croatia international is only contracted to the Bundesliga outfit until June 2011 and will walk away as a free agent if he has not agreed fresh terms by then.
Schalke are understandably keen to keep the highly-rated midfielder at the Veltins Arena and have already opened talks with the player and his representative.
Magath believes those discussions are going well and is optimistic regarding the club's chances of securing Rakitic's signature.
"Talks are progressing, we have reached a certain stage," he told Deutsche Presseagentur.
"I believe that we are going to find an agreement that will see the player remain at our club beyond the end of the current season.
"Ivan Rakitic is a young player and he has every chance to develop here."
While Schalke remain in confident mood, the 22-year-old's agent has revealed that there is plenty of interest in his client from elsewhere.
Michael Urscheler claims clubs in Italy and Spain are keeping close tabs on Rakitic, and insists there is no guarantee that he will commit to an extended stay in Germany.
He told calciomercato.it: "The renewal of the contract? It is a priority for Magath, but a final decision has not been taken.
"I think in the next two weeks we will decide what to do about the future - sign a new contract or move in January or June.
"We have been talking for two months and now is the time to make a decision. Magath is waiting to see what Ivan will do.
"Are Juventus, Inter, Milan and Napoli interested in Rakitic? There are contacts with many clubs, but nothing is concrete as yet.
"Ivan is a technical player and if he were to leave Germany, the two leagues he would prefer to go to are Serie A and La Liga."