OFFICIAL: Manchester City sign Josko Gvardiol

Manchester City Josko Gvardiol

Manchester City have announced the signing of Josko Gvardiol from RB Leipzig for a reported £77 million. 

The Croatian defender underwent his medical on Friday afternoon at City’s training base before he was unveiled on Saturday.

The 21-year-old signed a five-year deal that will keep him at the Etihad till 2028, with the fee City paid for his signature making him the second most expensive defender of all time behind Harry Maguire, who joined Manchester United for £80m from Leicester City in 2019.

“I have always dreamed of one day playing in England,” he told City’s official media.

“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 this team’s quality,” he added.

“To be joining City is 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.”

What Gvardiol said about Haaland and Kovacic

The defender also spoke of his delight playing with Croatia teammate Mateo Kovacic, who joined City this summer. He also reserved special praise for Erling Haaland, who he is happy not to play against. 

“To be linking up with [Croatia midfielder] Mateo Kovacic will also be special,” he said. 

“Luckily, I’m on his (Haaland) side now, and I don’t have to take care of him anymore.” 

Gvardiol has been capped 21 times by Croatia. He impressed in his two seasons at Leipzig after joining from Dynamo Zagreb in July 2021 and will wear the number 24 shirt at Man City.

“He is a player we have watched closely, and we feel he has a superb set of attributes. Top European clubs have been monitoring him, so bringing him here is great news for us,” said City Director of Football Txiki Begiristain.

“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, strong self-belief and a good character. He is left-footed, too, which offers us good options at the back.”

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