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The two young prospects have been strongly linked with the Gelsenkirchen exit door but the man who helped nurture their talents says they retain a strong affection for the club.

Schalke youth academy director Oliver Ruhnert believes a love for the club has contributed to the success of Julian Draxler and Max Meyer.

Draxler has been attracting the attentions of some of Europe's biggest clubs, while Meyer has also caught the eye with a string of impressive performances.

But Ruhnert believes the club's values are engrained in the midfield duo and have contributed to their rise through the ranks.

"A player has to identify with the club," he is quoted as saying on the official Bundesliga website. "I keep saying Schalke are all about tradition and emotions. Every player in our youth academy is talented, but you need the right will and identification, and desire to represent Schalke.

"Both (Draxler and Meyer) have Schalke in their hearts.

"Julian Draxler does as he even grew up in Gelsenkirchen, but it's no different with Max Meyer, who joined us when he was older.

"The lads shouldn't see Schalke just as their employers, but also be passionate about the club. We're very, very proud of them. They're a prime example of the successful collaboration between our youth academy and the senior side."

Schalke currently sits fourth in the Bundesliga, 19 points adrift of leader Bayern Munich.

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