Chelsea are still yet to fully take shape under Graham Potter; with the manager replacing Thomas Tuchel at the beginning of the season, the Blues are yet to truly find their feet under the reins of the former Brighton & Hove Albion manager.
The World Cup break couldn’t have come at a better time for the 47-year-old, who could not prevent a three-game skid before the midseason pause, with the defence no longer holding its formidable aura and the attack lacking oil.
Paying close attention to the esteemed competition, Potter will be delighted to witness the endeavours of touted titan Josko Gvardiol, who recently hinted at a desire to leave RB Leipzig in the near future, saying “maybe one day I will be [at Chelsea].”
With Chelsea interested, and Fabrizio Romano now tweeting that the player is set to depart Saxony in 2023, speculation is only set to intensify, with Potter facing a clash against Real Madrid to secure the signature.
In his tweet, the Italian transfer insider said: “Josko Gvardiol race, still open. He will get big transfer in 2023 – Chelsea are still working on the deal but there are other clubs interested, it’s not done yet… as Nkunku is. Been told release clause is not worth €45m.”
Gvardiol’s efforts on the global stage are only illuminating the calibre of the “man mountain” – in the words of Ryan Taylor – who is steadily climbing the ladder toward prominence.
Such efforts have earned recognition, with the colossus being likened to coveted former Real Madrid centre-back Sergio Ramos, with the player himself basing his game on the illustrious legend.
And there is certainly semblance between the two titans, with both adopting the full-back role during the early stage of their respective careers and both possessing technicality and flair that most central defenders can only dream of boasting.
With aggression and an innate ability to repel advances, Gvardiol might just succeed in emulating the coveted former Madridista, and with Los Blancos also eyeing his services, it appears president Florentino Perez shares this notion.
The 20-year-old, valued at an eye-watering £80m, would be worth every penny that Chelsea can offer, with his assurance and ability on the ball a telling sign that a career laden with trophies and individual accolades is set to follow in the 15-cap international’s wake.
The “monster”, as Romano proclaimed in an earlier tweet, recorded a triad of sterling showings in Qatar, an integral part in his nation’s two clean sheets in three matches, with the only goal shipping during the 4-1 victory over Canada.
As per Sofascore, Gvardiol recorded an average rating of 7.3, excelling with his 5.7 clearances and 1.7 interceptions per match, while also completing 90% of his passes.
Having made 19 appearances for Leipzig this term, Gvardiol is truly on the cusp of breaking into the upper end of the copious pool of defensive talent in world football, and at Chelsea he would be able to harness and nurture these abilities, perhaps emerging as the new Ramos as the next era of the sport dawns.