Date:14th September 2022 at 6:25am
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Chelsea’s deadline week bid for RB Leipzig’s defensive starlet, Josko Gvardiol, was turned down as the club remain convinced that other clubs will join the race for his signature next summer.

What’s the word?

That is according to Fabrizio Romano, who also expressed that Chelsea’s deadline week bid was for the summer transfer window that will take place next year in 2023.

Taking to his personal Twitter page, Romano said:

“RB Leipzig turned down Chelsea bid for Josko Gvardiol on Deadline week [it was for summer 2023] as they’re convinced other clubs will join the race next summer, including Man City.

“New deal until 2027 but Chelsea are still there and the race is absolutely open.”

So close, yet so far

Chelsea’s bid for the €90m (£78million) “top quality” wonderkid, as dubbed by fellow countryman Mateo Kovacic, was widely coveted by Romano and even prompted an exclusive tweet stating that the deal was soon to be completed.

Romano issued this update on the penultimate day of the summer window:

“Exclusive: Chelsea are in advanced talks with RB Leipzig to sign Joško Gvardiol! Deal would be completed now but with Gvardiol staying at RB Leipzig, he’d join Chelsea in June 2023.

“Official proposal submitted today around €90m. Negotiations ongoing on clubs side.”

It is no wonder why Boehly made a last-minute move to sign the 20-year-old Croatia international.

Despite turning out for an underperforming Leipzig side this season, Gvardiol has asserted himself as the club’s greatest ball-playing asset across the first six games so far, averaging 66.6 accurate passes and 6.6 accurate long balls per 90.

The starlet also tops the charts for his average of 1.1 blocks per 90, with Hungarian teammate Willi Orban the next closest with 0.8 blocks per match.

The future appears to be very bright for Gvardiol and RB Leipzig are clearly very aware, after deciding to wait in order to initiate a bidding war for their prize defensive asset.

With Boehly’s scattergun approach, this is one to watch from a Chelsea perspective.