Chelsea, Liverpool, and Manchester United are reportedly hoping to beat Manchester City to the big-money signing of RB Leipzig defender Josko Gvardiol this summer.

Although Manchester City look set to secure the signature of RB Leipzig defender Josko Gvardiol this summer, the Cityzens might have to fend off stiff competition from fellow Premier League clubs who are trying to capitalise on the situation by submitting offers for the talented centre-back.

That is according to a report from Spanish outlet Fichajes, which says Chelsea, Liverpool, and Manchester United are all formulating their respective strategies to hijack the treble winners’ pursuit of the €100 million-rated Croatian international.

Regarded as one of the most exciting young defenders in the world, the Croat has enjoyed a stellar rise in prominence in recent times, aided by his strong performances at the 2022 World Cup, where he helped his country to the semi-finals. But while he was introduced to the wider public in Qatar, he was already a player being closely followed thanks to his strong displays in the Bundesliga.

Needless to say, he has attracted the attention of several elite clubs. But the treble-winners were the first ones to act upon their interest with a formal bid worth around €90 million earlier this summer, which was duly rejected as the Bundesliga side want nothing short of €100 million for Gvardiol, which, if transpires, would make him the most expensive defender in the history of the game.

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There were rumours that everything was agreed upon; however, those appear to be wide of the mark, with RB Leipzig sporting director Max Eberl insisting any agreement isn’t “even close” at this moment in time.

Now, Fichajes are reporting that negotiations between City and the German outfit have stalled a bit, leaving the door open for other suitors to enter the fray. Liverpool, Manchester United, and Chelsea have all taken advantage of the situation and have lodged offers to try to hijack Gvardiol’s move to the Etihad.

Chelsea, for one, chased Gvardiol last summer and even made a bid to land him, only for Leipzig to rebuff the west London club’s offer. However, they are well stocked at left-sided centre-back, with Levi Colwill and Benoit Badiashile both highly regarded at the club. Replenishing the ranks in midfield appears to be more of a priority than another top-class left-footed defender.

The same goes for Manchester United, who have Lisandro Martinez in the position. And a €100 million swoop indeed seems hard to envisage given the FFP restrictions and limited budget. Liverpool seem to have more of a case to be interested in a late Gvardiol swoop than the aforementioned duo.

The Reds must find a successor to Joel Matip, as he is 31 years old and entering the twilight years of his career. Interestingly, Gvardiol has already named Anfield as his “dream” destination, having been a self-professed boyhood Liverpool fan.

The report adds that despite the fresh competition from the Premier League trio, Pep Guardiola’s reigning champions are currently leading the pursuit of the 21-year-old wonderkid, who has already agreed on personal terms with City move weeks ago. Whoever ends up signing Gvardiol will be getting a top defender with the potential to be world-class in the near future.

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