Manchester City newcomer Josko Gvardiol received a warm welcome in England from former teammate Dominik Szoboszlai though now they are now in opposing camps, with Szoboszlai having moved to Liverpool.

Gvardiol was acquired by Manchester City in a long-awaited summer move, with a price tag of €90 million. The 21-year-old Croatian sensation signed on for five years with City, strengthening Pep Guardiola’s redoubtable line-up, which includes defensive mainstays John Stones, Ruben Dias, Nathan Ake, Aymeric Laporte and Manuel Akanji.

Liverpool’s Hungarian midfielder Dominik Szoboszlai welcomed Gvardiol’s arrival at Manchester City. “What a spieler. Congrats brother (neighbours),” he tweeted from Liverpool, also in North West England like Manchester.

Gvardiol and Szoboszlai were teammates at RB Leipzig for the last two seasons.

Liverpool acquired Szoboszlai for €70 million in the summer. Poised to shine as a regular starter at Liverpool, the 22-year-old has a bright future under Jurgen Klopp.

Meanwhile, Gvardiol faces stiff competition at Manchester City. Primarily a centre-back who also plays as left back, he will have to compete for his usual place with other noted centre-backs such as Stones, Dias, Ake, Laporte and Akanji.

However, Gvardiol is unfazed by the competition.

“I have always dreamed of one day playing in England. … this is an incredible day for me. Anyone who saw Manchester City play last season knows they are the best team in the world.” he is quoted as saying in article on sportskeeda.com.

Liverpool sought Gvardiol 

Although Gvardiol is now singing the praises of Manchester City, earlier he was a Liverpool fan. And Liverpool also wanted him before he signed on with City.

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To recall recent history, Josko Gvardiol secured a transfer from Dinamo Zagreb to RB Leipzig in 2021, emerging as a promising replacement for Ibrahima Konate, who was leaving for Liverpool. Gvardiol openly stated his desire to wear the Liverpool jersey after joining the German club, a passion he also communicated to Croatia’s 24Sata website.

“Liverpool (is my favourite foreign club). From a young age, I watched Liverpool games with my dad and how I grew up with just them. When I took football more seriously, I started following them, and I definitely want the Premiership and Liverpool.” Gvardiol said, according to a sportskeeda.com article.

Liverpool reportedly contacted RB Leipzig in January in its quest for Gvardiol but were told he wasn’t available. In the end, the Croatian defensive prodigy signed a five-year deal with Manchester City.

The question now: Will Jurgen Klopp look for another new centre-back? Liverpool needs a new centre-back with Virgil van Djik, 32, and Joel Matip, 31, getting on in years and Joe Gomez plagued by injuries.

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