Leeds United are preparing a summer swoop for RB Leipzig defender Josko Gvardiol.
The Peacocks were linked with a move for Josko Gvardiol, 20, following a promotion back to the Premier League in 2020. However, the defender snubbed a move to Premier League to join RB Leipzig from Dinamo Zagreb last summer.
Since moving to RB Leipzig, the Croatian international has established himself as a mainstay in the club’s defence, racking up 39 appearances across all competitions to date. He played under Jesse Marsch at RB Leipzig, and with the American now at the helm of Leeds United, it appears as if the versatile defender is wanted once again by the Yorkshire giants.
Victor Orta, Leeds United’s director of football, and his recruitment team have continued to monitor Gvardiol’s progress in the Bundesliga ahead of a potential move heading into the summer transfer window. However, the Whites could face competition from other clubs for the youngster, who is currently valued at around the £27m mark by Leipzig.
Jesse Marsch keen on strengthening Leeds’ backline
Jesse Marsch has identified Josko Gvardiols as an option to strengthen his backline after Leeds’ frailties this season. The Whites have the worst defensive record in the division, conceding an eye-watering 68 goals in 32 games.
However, Marsch has stemmed the flow of goals since replacing Marcelo Bielsa at Elland Road, bringing in some much-needed stability to the club. Leeds have won three of their last five games and their recent 3-0 win over Watford has pushed them further towards safety.
Presently, Marsch has Robin Koch, Liam Cooper, Pascal Struijk, Diego Llorente and Charlie Cresswell as centre-back options at his disposal. Cooper, Koch and Llorente have all endured injury-plagued campaigns, while Struijk’s underwhelming performances continue.
Josko Gvardiol could be a top buy for the Peacocks
Josko Gvardiol is developing into one of European football’s brightest centre-back prospects. He has impressed at Leipzig with his strong displays at the back, thereby, catching the attention of many clubs.
Standing at 6ft 1ins tall, the 10-cap Croatian international is a powerful, robust and intimidating presence in defence. A proactive defender, he is always willing to go toe-to-toe with the opposition forwards and win the ball back for his team before quickly releasing it.
The youngster can bring the ball out from the back well and spot his teammates in the final third with accurate diagonals and long balls. Add his versatility of playing at left-back, Gvardiol has all the makings of a top centre-back.
At 20, Gvardiol has a long way to go in his career, and he possesses the attributes to come in at Leeds and make a huge impact next season. Thus, the Whites must go all out for the Croat’s pursuit when the transfer window reopens.
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.