Saturday, January 28, 2023

Update on Chelsea’s Fernandez pursuit

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Chelsea look set to complete the signing of Enzo Fernandez from Benfica for a club-record fee, according to Alex Crook.

What’s the word?

The midfielder, who played a starring role for Argentina at the World Cup, looks set to move to West London, with Chelsea paying a British-record transfer fee.

The 21-year-old won the Young Player of the Tournament award in Qatar, and is set for another move having only joined Benfica from River Plate at the start of the season.

Speaking on TalkSPORT, Crook shared details of the potential deal, and stated that he expects it to go through.

Will Enzo Fernandez be a good signing?

“The key here is the terms of the transfer fee. We know it’s going to be in excess of his £105m release clause,” he stated.

“But Chelsea, as I mentioned yesterday, want to pay in three installments to try and get round their FFP limitations.

“The final call is still to be made by the Benfica hierarchy. Enzo Fernandez has already agreed personal terms. He’s already checked out, basically, he thinks he’s played his last game for Benfica, but Scott Minto told us yesterday it wasn’t a particularly good performance, if it was his last game.

“I think this will happen but we’re just waiting for the final green light from Benfica.”

A big gamble?

Although his talent was on full display at the World Cup, the size of the fee is arguably excessive, considering the Argentine’s lack of experience.

Fernandez has played just 25 games for Benfica since his summer move, and even at River Plate he only made 53 senior appearances.

His value has shot up as a result of his national team displays, and he would slot straight into the Chelsea midfield with N’Golo Kante and Jorginho potentially leaving in the summer, but such a large deal for a 21-year-old does carry a risk of failure if he cannot live up to expectations.



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