RB Leipzig chief confirms Josko Gvardiol £86m Manchester City move

RB Leipzig chief confirms Josko Gvardiol £86m Manchester City move

RB Leipzig’s sporting director, Max Eberl, has confirmed that defender Josko Gvardiol is eager to join Manchester City. The two clubs are currently engaged in discussions regarding a potential summer deal worth €100m (£86m). Gvardiol, who is only 21 years old, is widely recognized as one of the most promising defensive talents in world football. Manchester City’s manager, Pep Guardiola, has identified him as a top transfer target for the upcoming 2023-24 season.

In the 2022-23 season, Gvardiol made 41 appearances for Leipzig in various competitions. During this time, Leipzig won the DFB-Pokal for the second consecutive year and secured a place in the next season’s Champions League by finishing third in the Bundesliga.

Gvardiol also had an impressive performance for Croatia at the 2022 World Cup, playing in every minute of their seven matches in Qatar. He even scored in the third-placed playoff victory against Morocco.

Just over a year ago, Gvardiol extended his contract with Leipzig until June 2027. This puts the German club in a strong position to demand a high price for their star defender.

The youngster, Josko Gvardiol, has attracted interest from top English Premier League clubs like Chelsea, Liverpool, and Manchester United in the past. Earlier this year, he expressed his desire to play in the Premier League.

While these clubs have shifted their focus to other transfer targets, Manchester City has intensified their pursuit of Gvardiol. As a result, City now has a clear path to pursue the young defender.

It’s reported that Gvardiol has already reached a personal agreement with Manchester City. Moreover, Leipzig’s sporting director, Max Eberl, has confirmed that negotiations are underway between the two clubs for a potential deal. If the deal goes through, Gvardiol would become the most expensive defender in the world.

As quoted by The Times, Eberl said: “Gvardiol and his agents gave us their desire to move to Manchester City. We are in talks with City.

“Yes, for €100m plus bonuses, Gvardiol will end up in Pep’s strong hands. The value of the deal would make Gvardiol the most expensive defender in history. But it might take a few more days.”

If Gvardiol’s move to Manchester City materializes, it would surpass the £80m fee Manchester United paid for Harry Maguire in 2019, making him the most expensive defender in history.

RB Leipzig had reportedly included a release clause of €110m (£94.4m) in Gvardiol’s contract last year, but that clause will not become active until 2024. It appears that Leipzig is now open to negotiating a slightly lower fee with Manchester City.

While Pep Guardiola already has several central defensive options, Gvardiol’s potential arrival could lead to Aymeric Laporte, another left-footed defender, seeking a move elsewhere. Laporte has fallen down the pecking order at Manchester City, having started only 11 Premier League games last season.

In addition to securing the signing of Mateo Kovacic from Chelsea, Manchester City may also consider recruiting another midfielder this summer. Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong has emerged as a possible target after withdrawing from the race to sign Declan Rice, who is reportedly heading to Arsenal.

RB Leipzig chief confirms Josko Gvardiol £86m Manchester City move

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