Former World Cup winning Germany captain Lothar Matthaus has launched a withering assessment of Wolfsburg playmaker Julian Draxler, saying he has a weak character.
Draxler, 23, was tipped for great things a few years ago but a poor run of form since joining Wolfsburg from Schalke in 2015 has somewhat halted his rise to prominence. Wolfsburg are currently embroiled in a relegation scrap at the bottom of the Bundesliga table but the club are still reportedly willing to let Draxler leave.
However, Matthaus has warned off potential suitors after strong comments which brought into question Draxler's ability to influence games at the highest level on a consistent basis.
"He is also to be held responsible for where Wolfsburg stand right now," Matthaus wrote in Sport Bild.
"I say very clearly: I would currently not sign Draxler as a top club because of his weak character.
"He might be a talent, but he has not shown he can make a difference at the highest level on a permanent basis."
Arsenal are known to have a long-standing interest in the player.
Draxler expressed his wish to leave Wolfsburg in the summer and hit out at sporting director Klaus Allofs for denying him a move, attracting criticism from supporters. Indeed, Draxler was benched by coach Valerien Ismael last weekend and was even booed by Wolfsburg fans when he came on as a second-half substitute during the 3-2 defeat to Hertha Berlin.
Ismael also appeared to show little sympathy for Draxler, saying the current situation was the Germany international's own doing.
"It's never nice when a player is whistled at by your own supporters. It's not helpful," Ismael told Sport1. "But you have to understand the fans. The player got himself into the situation."