Chelsea have joined a group of Europe’s top clubs in showing their interest in Argentina’s World Cup star Enzo Fernandez. The 21-year-old started every match after being substituted on against Mexico in the second group game and completed 120 minutes in the final too.
Having only joined Benfica from River Plate over the summer Fernandez was a relative unknown for most heading into the tournament but he also impressed in the Champions League too. In a group with powerhouses Juventus and Paris Saint- Germain, Fernandez helped his side to finish first, going unbeaten.
He only cost £10m six months ago but already has a much higher price on his head after becoming the answer to Lionel Scaloni’s midfield puzzle. Playing alongside the equally impressive Alexis Mac Allister and Rodrigo De Paul, Fernandez is now being chased by a handful of eager teams.
With midfield issues heading into 2023, both Jorginho and N’Golo Kante are out of contract in June, Mateo Kovacic has fitness issues as does Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Chelsea are in desperate need of a player with the skill and ability of Fernandez. Liverpool are just as hard pressed in the middle of the park though and are rivalling the Blues for Declan Rice and Jude Bellingham already, as well as Fernandez.
Elsewhere, Real Madrid lost Casemiro in the summer and have Luka Modric at 36 in their side, Manchester United are still looking at long-term options and PSG and Manchester City are after the best players in the world constantly. Competition is high, but according to Diario Record , one club has made a €100m (£87.9m) bid for him.
The report states that it was rejected, with the Portuguese side holding out for €120m (£105.5m). The clubs listed above are amongst the very few that could afford that sort of price, but Liverpool did not make it. That alone may well be a boost for Chelsea who will need to make a breakthrough in their bid to sign a midfielder regardless of if it is Fernandez or not , but the battle to sign one of the world’s new stars is well and truly on.