Austrian international David Alaba has admitted he could look for the exit door at Bayern Munich in a bid to seek 'a new challenge' in his career.
The 25-year-old has spent the entirety of his playing days with the Bavarian giants - bar a short stint with Hoffenheim in 2010/11 - and after continually impressing the left-back has earned the attention of Spanish powerhouses Barcelona and Real Madrid.
Alaba is contracted at the Alianz Stadium until 2021 but has hinted that he could look to take his football elsewhere in the future when the time comes to make a decision.
"I am aware that one day I will have to make a decision, and I still feel great. But it is also true that I imagine taking a different path, making the next step or looking for a new challenge," Alaba told Austrian outlet Kurier.
"But I leave that open for now. I have goals for this season I want to reach. That's why there is no place for those thoughts right now."
Alaba has continually impressed with his versatility and despite casting an eye towards what his future away from Bayern may entail, the 25-year-old acknowledged that it may be time for him to step up to a leadership role at the German club.
He added: "I am no longer a talent, I am aware of that. But I am not the oldest player either. I am at an age where I have had a lot of experience and where I would like to take the next step in my career.
"It is also part of taking the next step in Bayern, of growing into a leadership role, assuming responsibility and passing on my experience. Especially for young players who follow suit. I think that the club expects me to slip into a leadership role."
After admitting to the potential of leaving Bayern and having the ability to operate at left-back and as a central midfielder, Alaba has undoubtedly alerted clubs from across Europe who will be desperate to lure him their way.
Catalan publication Sport, reacting to the Austrian's comments, claimed the interview has put Barcelona - who have long been admirers of the 25-year-old - 'on alert', while suggesting that Ernesto Valverde's side could make a move in the near future.