Chelsea have tabled a formal offer worth 120m euros for Enzo Fernandez as they look to end the transfer window with a flourish, in a deal that would make the midfielder their, and the Premier League’s, record signing.
The Blues have been keen on recruiting Fernandez all winter, and saw their initial offers knocked back as Benfica pointed solely at his 120m euro release clause, which would have to be paid in one installment. Instead, Chelsea have returned with an offer that would see them match the World Cup winner’s 120m euro valuation, but over several installments, and would make him the most expensive player in the history of English football, overtaking Jack Grealish’s £100m switch to Manchester City.
As per CBS Sports, “the offer has one large lump sum and five smaller payments”, and “although Rui Costa will have final say, there is pressure from both Fernandez and some Benfica board members to accept”.
The move would mark a massive profit for Benfica, who only signed Fernandez in the summer from River Plate in a deal worth 10m euros, but it is unclear as to whether or not they will sanction a move with so little time to go in the transfer window.
Benfica boss Roger Schmidt claimed last week that “I’m confident on Enzo staying with us, yes. I see him very happy, in great condition”, but it is thought that the player would be keen to move to Chelsea if the opportunity arose in the coming hours.
Should a move go through, it would take Chelsea’s spending this January over the 300m euro mark. They have already added Noni Madueke, Mykhaylo Mudryk, Benoit Badiashile, David Datro Fofana and Andrey Santos in permanent deals, while Malo Gusto has also been signed but has been loaned back to Lyon for the remainder of the season.
Joao Felix has also joined on loan, taking the number of new faces in west London to 16 since the arrival of Todd Boehly in May.