Bayern Munich have been given permission to speak to Schalke's midfield playmaker Lincoln.
The 27-year-old Brazilian has long been touted as a possible replacement for Michael Ballack, who will leave the Allianz Arena this summer.
Schalke team manager Andreas Muller revealed the contact after the club's 3-1 win over Bielefeld, but said there was no basis for negotiations as yet.
Muller also emphasised the club's desire to keep the player at the Veltins Arena, if at all possible.
"Bayern general manager Uli Hoeness has contacted our board chairman Clemens Tonnies and asked whether he can start negotiations with Lincoln's agent. Tonnies said he could," Muller admitted.
"Our position is quite clear: we want to keep Lincoln.
"I have spoken to him and asked whether he wants to leave us. He said he didn't."
Despite the German's upbeat attitude, the lure of the Bundesliga leaders and UEFA Champions League football could prove too much for the Brazilian to turn down.
Munich only need two more points to be certain of winning the German league title with two games remaining.
Schalke are currently fourth and face FSV Mainz away and Stuttgart at home in their final two fixtures.