Manchester City have confirmed the signing of Croatian defender Josko Gvardiol from RB Leipzig. He has penned a five-year deal with the Sky Blues after a fee believed to be £77.6m was agreed with RB Leipzig.
Chelsea, Liverpool and Real Madrid were all linked with a big-money move for Josko Gvardiol, but Manchester City have won the race for his signature after a month of intense negotiations with RB Leipzig. The centre-back, 21, underwent a medical on Friday and becomes Man City’s second signing of the summer transfer window, following in the footsteps of Croatian teammate Mateo Kovacic, who arrived from Chelsea earlier this summer.
Like Kovacic, Gvardiol began his senior career at Dinamo Zagreb, where he won two Croatian League titles, one Croatian Cup and a Croatian Super Cup in two seasons. He joined RB Leipzig from Dinamo Zagreb in 2021 and went on to make 87 appearances for the Bundesliga side, winning the German Cup in consecutive campaigns.
The left-footed defender also has represented the Croatian national team 21 times and was vital to the Zlatko Dalic-managed team’s run to the World Cup semi-finals in Qatar last year.
“I have always dreamed of one day playing in England and to be doing so now with Manchester City – after the season they have just had – is a real honour for me,” Gvardiol told City’s official website.
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— Manchester City (@ManCity) August 5, 2023
“Anyone who saw Manchester City play last season knows they are the best team in the world. To win the treble says everything you need to know about the quality this team has.
“To be joining City is something very special for me and my family. To have the chance to work with Pep Guardiola will be amazing. I know I am not yet the finished article and I am sure my game will progress under the best coach in football.
“To be linking up with Mateo Kovacic will also be special. He’s a top footballer and I hope we can both help City achieve another successful season in 2023/24 and then beyond.”
Josko Gvardiol is a sensational signing for Man City
Having arrived at the Etihad Stadium for a fee of £77.6m, Josko Gvardiol becomes the most expensive defender for Man City, beating Ruben Dias’ £65m move from Benfica in the summer of 2020 and Aymeric Laporte’s £57m move from Athletic Bilbao in January 2018. Widely regarded as one of the best centre-backs in Europe, the Croat will bolster the Sky Blues’ defensive unit.
A left-footed centre-back by trade, the 21-year-old can also operate as a left-back and will significantly help Pep Guardiola’s side with his flexibility, technical skills, physical presence and mentality. He was outstanding for Croatia in the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, catching the attention with his ball-playing skills, physicality and reading of the game.
At the age of 21, Gvardiol can play a massive role in the Cityzens’ success in the upcoming years and unlock his scary potential under the watchful eyes of Guardiola. All in all, City beating some of Europe’s elite teams for the Croatian centre-back’s signing is a terrific piece of business.
I am Rohan Sengupta from one of the busiest cities in India, Mumbai. A Journalism graduate with a keen interest in sports, football is something I simply cannot live without and writing, discussing and analyzing the game is what I do 24*7.