Chelsea’s potential record move for Enzo Fernandez has collapsed as the two sides remain too far apart in both valuation and payment structure, according to reports.
The Blues had been strongly linked with a record-breaking move for the 21-year-old Argentine, who was named young player of the tournament as he helped the Albiceleste win the World Cup in Qatar last month, though Benfica were determined to stick to their 120m release clause valuation of the talented star.
Chelsea, however, were thought to be keen to pay over the release clause, but to do so in more favourable payment terms to ensure that they could comply with financial fair play regulations.
As per Argentinian outlet TYC Sports, however, a deal is now dead, with the Portuguese side now only willing to discuss a move should Fernandez’s release clause be triggered, which would require a payment of 120m euros all in one go, rather than in installments.
It leaves Fernandez likely to remain with Benfica until the summer, with fellow interested club Liverpool not able to stump up the required fee this January.
Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano has since shed further light on the proposed deal, adding that “Chelsea’s official proposal for Enzo Fernández was never €120m or €127m. The final proposal made to Benfica was €85m fee”.
The Blues are still expected to be very active this January despite the recent setback, with Benoit Badiashile set to join the club from Monaco and Todd Boehly expected to have meetings over Mykhaylo Mudryk in the coming days as they look to snatch the Ukrainian away from under the noses of London rivals Arsenal.