Enzo Fernandez ‘very close’ to Chelsea move amid record transfer

The Blues are set to sign the World Cup star in January

Benfica midfielder Enzo Fernandez is now ‘very close’ to a move to Stamford Bridge in what will be a record signing for the Premier League according to reports.

The 21-year-old Argentine enjoyed a stellar World Cup campaign in the heart of the Albiceleste midfield, increasing speculation around his future, but the Portuguese side remained bullish on their stance that it would take the activation of his 120m euro release clause to prise him away from the current Portuguese Premier League leaders, under the assumption that would deter potential buyers.

But the blues have instead decided to take the plunge, with reports claiming that a deal worth 127m euros, above the release clause, but to be paid in installments, is ‘very close’. It will mark a British record transfer, eclipsing the £100m paid for Jack Grealish by Manchester City in the summer of 2021, and it will make the youngster the fourth most expensive signing of all time, behind only PSG duo Kylian Mbappe and Neymar and now Aston Villa outcast Philippe Coutinho.

Personal terms are not expected to be a problem, with a deal until 2028 in the pipeline and Fernandez keen on a move to Stamford Bridge. It will be the second time that Chelsea have opted to pay over a release clause to get more favourable payment terms, with Christopher Nkunku’s transfer following the same pattern. The Frenchman is set to join the club from RB Leipzig in the summer.

Chelsea are also in the final stages of a deal for Monaco defender Benoit Badiashile, with a deal worth around 35m euros having been agreed and a medical for the 21-year-old defender already scheduled. The Blues have already made two signings this month, with David Datro Fofana and Andrey Santos both having joined the club. They are also expected to be in the hunt for a forward in the weeks to come, with Joao Felix and Memphis Depay both linked with a move to Stamford Bridge.

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Ben Browning

Ben Browning

Football writer and analyst. Long-time writer of all things Arsenal and avid watcher of European football. Happy to discuss all things football over on Twitter.

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