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Chelsea remain hopeful over deal to sign key defensive target

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Chelsea remain optimistic that they will be able to strike a deal to sign RB Leipzig defender Josko Gvardiol in 2023, sources have confirmed to 90min.

The 20-year-old centre-back was a target for Todd Boehly late in the summer transfer window but Gvardiol ended up signing a one-year contract extension which is understood to include a release clause of around £45m, which will become active at the end of the current season.

Since his extension, Chelsea have remained in contact with Leipzig over a double deal for both Gvardiol and teammate Christopher Nkunku, the latter of whom is believed to have all but confirmed his move to Stamford Bridge at the end of the season.

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Now, the talks with Leipzig are focused on Gvardiol and sources have confirmed to 90min that Chelsea believe they are close to agreeing another deal with the Bundesliga side.

As with Nkunku, Chelsea have indicated a willingness to pay over Gvardiol’s release clause, allowing them to split the payment up over several years, rather than trigger the clause and be forced to pay the entire amount up front.

The two clubs have forged a strong relationship, with Boehly known to be an enormous fan of the Red Bull approach to football – a global operation driven by data analysis – and Chelsea believe this could work in their favour in their attempts to sign both Gvardiol and Nkunku.

Harry Symeou hosts Jack Gallagher and Toby Cudworth to look back on Germany ’06 as part of the ‘Our World Cup’ series. We take a trip down memory lane – join us!

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If you can’t see the podcast embed, click to download or listen to the episode in full!

As with the French forward, Chelsea are hoping to announce Gvardiol’s signing in January – even if the players remain with Leipzig until the end of the season – but the Bundesliga side are hesitant to agree to a sale so early in the campaign.

There is significant interest in Gvardiol from across Europe, with a number of elite sides considering making moves, and Leipzig have not ruled out waiting until the summer to agree a sale.

However, Chelsea believe their willingness to exceed Gvardiol’s release clause, on top of their positive relationship with the Leipzig hierarchy, will ensure they win the race for the Croatia international’s signature.

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Elsewhere, Chelsea are also interested in a deal to sign Inter’s Milan Skriniar, who is yet to extend his contract with the Serie A side and could leave on a free transfer at the end of the season.

Skriniar has interest from across the Premier League as well as mainland Europe, where Paris Saint-Germain have been attempting to finalise his signing since the summer.



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EPL

Leicester confirm signing of defender Harry Souttar from Stoke City

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Leicester have finalised the signing of Australian centre-back Harry Souttar from Stoke on a permanent deal.

The 24-year-old returned from a serious knee injury only weeks before the World Cup but put in some excellent performances as Australia reached the knockout stages.

90min understands that a fee of £15m has been agreed for Souttar, who has now put pen to paper on his contract at the King Power Stadium.

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Leicester have endured a tricky winter window, missing out on a number of targets, but they have managed to bring in three new faces.

Brazilian winger Tete has joined on loan from Shakhtar Donetsk after his loan with Lyon was terminated, while 20-year-old Danish left-back Victor Kristiansen will join Souttar in attempting to shore up Brendan Rodgers’ defence.



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Keylor Navas joins Nottingham Forest on loan

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Nottingham Forest have confirmed the loan signing of Keylor Navas from Paris Saint-Germain until the end of the season.

The Costa Rican comes to the City Ground with a wealth of top level experience having won three UEFA Champions League titles during a lengthy tenure at Real Madrid, before enjoying a stint as PSG’s number one goalkeeper – winning two Ligue 1 titles in that time.

This season however, Navas has been fully usurped by Gianluigi Donnarumma in the PSG goal, meaning that he’s now had to go out on loan to find gametime elsewhere.

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A club statement on the signing reads:

“Nottingham Forest is delighted to announce the signing of Keylor Navas from Paris Saint-Germain.

“The goalkeeper has signed on loan for the remainder of the 2022/23 campaign.

“Navas, 36, brings a wealth of international and domestic experience to the Club, having made 564 appearances in a trophy-laden career.”

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Nottingham Forest confirm signing of Jonjo Shelvey from Newcastle

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Nottingham Forest have completed the signing of midfielder Jonjo Shelvey from Newcastle United.

Shelvey joins on a permanent deal, signing a two-and-a-half-year contract at the City Ground.

“It’s a pleasure to be here. As soon as I found out Forest were interested, it caught my eye straight away and I just couldn’t wait to get down here,” said Shelvey, who will wear the number 6 shirt for Forest.

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“It’s a fantastic football club that has so much history and I’m really looking forward to getting started.

“My main goal straight away is to fight for my place in the team and stay there. It’s not going to be easy because there’s a lot of competition for places, but it’s a challenge I’m really looking forward to and the competitiveness can only help the team going forward.

“I spoke to Eddie Howe and he had such good words to say about Steve Cooper. I previously knew of him from my time at Liverpool, so I knew what a fantastic coach he was, but meeting him for the first time has been a breath of fresh air.

“He’s told me what he expects and the high standards he sets, so I can hope I can come and help the team push to stay in the Premier League. I’ve been in this league a long time, I know what it takes to stay up and what it takes to get a good team to gel, so I’m looking forward to getting started and working with the players that are here.”

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Forest are also hoping to finalise the signing of Keylor Navas from Paris Saint-Germain later on Deadline Day.



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