Chelsea report: Josko Gvardiol signing could require record-breaking transfer fee

Josko Gvardiol wearing a protective face covering
(Image credit: Getty)

Chelsea target Josko Gvardiol could become the most expensive defender in Bundesliga history, say reports, after his mammoth release clause at RB Leipzig was revealed.

The 20-year-old was one of the standout young players at the World Cup, putting in a string of superb performances to help Croatia finish third.

Gvardiol’s form on international football’s biggest stage put Leipzig in an even stronger position to demand a big fee for his signature from any suitors.

Sky Germany report that the centre-back has a release clause of €110m (£96m) in his contract that will become active in 2024.

That kind of fee would make him the most expensive defender in Bundesliga history, should the clause be activated.         

However, the report adds that Leipzig have ‘good chances’ of keeping Gvardiol next summer.

Recent reports said that Chelsea were looking to steal a march on Real Madrid by making a January bid for the defender.

The Croatian has a deal until 2027 with the Bundesliga side, who he joined from Dinamo Zagreb in July 2021.

More Chelsea stories

Chelsea are on red alert amid reports that Juventus could try to prise Mason Mount away from Stamford Bridge.

The Blues are one of three Premier League clubs looking to sign Josko Gvardiol, who has starred for Croatia at World Cup 2022.

And long-time transfer target Declan Rice has admitted he is open to a move away from West Ham next summer.

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Alasdair Mackenzie is a freelance journalist based in Rome, and a FourFourTwo contributor since 2015. When not pulling on the FFT shirt, he can be found at Reuters, The Times and the i. An Italophile since growing up on a diet of Football Italia on Channel 4, he now counts himself among thousands of fans sharing a passion for Ross County and Lazio.