Chelsea complete Fernandez signing from Benfica
Chelsea’s staggering spending spree continued when they broke the British transfer record to sign Enzo Fernández for €121m (£106.8m) after a frenzied day of negotiations with Benfica.
The deal, confirmed by the London club early on Wednesday morning, takes Chelsea’s spending under the Todd Boehly-Clearlake Capital ownership to more than £500m and is another sign of their determination to dominate the transfer market.
Negotiations were led by the co-owner Behdad Eghbali, who was dogged throughout discussions with Benfica on Tuesday, and Graham Potter will hope Fernández makes his side stronger in central midfield.
According to Portuguese broadcaster SIC, Fernandez will fly to the UK on Wednesday morning, with a private jet scheduled to leave Lisbon airport at 10.20am.
Fernandez will help to replace Jorginho, who joined Chelsea’s London rivals Arsenal on Deadline Day in a £12m deal.
“Fernandez’s attributes make it clear how he can help. Still only halfway through his first season with Benfica, he has racked up the second-most assists in the Primeira Liga, and created 30 chances for his team-mates
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some of them particularly eye-catching, and a stunning pinpoint set-up for Goncalo Ramos against Sporting earlier this month perhaps the pick of the bunch.
“It is that kind of playmaking potential which had Manchester City and Real Madrid interested in bringing him in from boyhood side River Plate last summer before he settled on a move to Lisbon.
“No one in the Portuguese top flight has made more passes than the Argentine, and if he does prove to replace Jorginho at Stamford Bridge, he will also provide something extra in the final third where he tops the charts for passes too.
“Should Chelsea want to play with a midfield two, he would offer a better option there too. Fernandez has already taken responsibility without the ball at Benfica, slotting into an anchorman role regularly as required.
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Enzo Fernandez will be on £220,000 per week at Chelsea. i.e. £11.6m per year.
He has signed a deal until June 2031 and holds the record of the most expensive Premier League signing
Here are the top 5 most expensive Premier League signings ever,
🇦🇷 Enzo Fernández €120M
🏴 Jack Grealish €117M
🇧🇪 Romelu Lukaku €113M
🇫🇷 Paul Pogba €105M
🇧🇷 Antony €95M
He has been one of the league’s top tacklers, and only 10 players across the division have won the ball back more in the middle third despite his considerable output further up the pitch.”