Manchester City have today announced the signing of Croatia international centre-back Josko Gvardiol from Bundesliga giants RB Leipzig.
The 21-year-old becomes Manchester City’s second first-team signing of the ongoing summer transfer window, following in the footsteps of international teammate Mateo Kovacic – who joined the club from Chelsea last month.
Josko Gvardiol makes the move to the home of the Premier League champions after the two clubs reached an agreement over a transfer fee that makes the ever-impressive central defender the second-most expensive in his area of the field, behind Harry Maguire.
Gvardiol’s move to Manchester City strengthens Pep Guardiola’s defensive options even further, and represents a fantastic piece of business with the player having the potential to become a stalwart at the heart of the Etihad defence for at least the next decade.
As all parties confirm the deal that has taken Josko Gvardiol from Leipzig to Manchester this week, here is everything you need to know about the deal itself!
What are the terms of the Josko Gvardiol to Manchester City deal?
Josko Gvardiol has joined Manchester City on an initial five-year contract running until the summer of 2028, with the Premier League champions having provided an approximate £78 million outlay for the Croatia international with no add-ons.
What has Josko Gvardiol said upon joining Manchester City?
“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. 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, too, 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.”
What has Txiki Begiristain said about his second signing this summer?
“We are very happy to bring Josko to Manchester City. He is a player we have watched closely, and we feel he has a superb set of attributes. Top clubs all over Europe have been monitoring him, so to bring him here is great news for us.
“Josko has so many qualities – everything you want in a centre-half. He is fast, competitive, combative, strong in the air, impressive in possession of the ball, with strong self-belief and a good character. He is left-footed, too, which offers us good options at the back.
“He is still young but his progress in the game has been rapid. We feel confident his upward trajectory will continue here at City working with Pep and his staff.”
Who else was interested in Josko Gvardiol this summer?
Chelsea are understood to have agreed some elements of a deal to sign Josko Gvardiol during the 2022 summer transfer window, while Manchester United had the Croatian on their centre-back shortlist before ultimately opting for Lisandro Martinez instead.
Real Madrid have also been keen admirers in the player, alongside Premier League giants Liverpool, whilst Bayern Munich held an admiration for the player’s performances in the Bundesliga in particular.
What have RB Leipzig said about the deal?
Max Eberl: “Josko is a player that we would have liked to have kept in the RBL jersey because of his outstanding quality and personality. But because of his desire to change and the overall financial package, which makes him the most expensive defender in history , we decided, taking all parameters into account, to agree to the early change.
“Josko goes to one of the world’s best teams That alone shows the development he has made with us over the past two years. Like others, he is an example of the path we are taking at RB Leipzig.
“Josko came as a highly gifted talent to Leipzig, was able to play in the premier class for the first time and has continuously improved in his performance. There aren’t that many clubs left that mean the next step in the careers of our players.
“The step to the Champions League winner, however, is part of it. We are convinced that Josko can also assert himself at Manchester City and wish him all the best for the future.”
What are Pep Guardiola’s plans for the centre-back this season and beyond?
Pep Guardiola and Manchester City believe Josko Gvardiol has all the capabilities to perform to a consistently high-level for the football club for the next decade, and as such the Premier League champions had no reservations about their high financial outlay on the player.
Guardiola and his coaching staff are expected to continue with their three-at-the-back defensive system next season, and as such the format is likely to suit Josko Gvardiol perfectly.
What shirt number will Josko Gvardiol wear for Manchester City?
Josko Gvardiol will wear the No.24 shirt for Manchester City, following on from the likes of Tosin Adarabioyo, John Stones, Nedum Onuoha, and Patrick Vieira.
Everyone at City Xtra would like to offer the warmest welcome to Josko to Manchester!
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