Chelsea close to reaching €130m agreement with Benfica for Enzo Fernandez
Chelsea are on the verge of reaching an agreement with Benfica over the signing of Enzo Fernandez, sources have told 90min.
The midfielder was one of the breakout stars of the 2022 World Cup, taking home the Young Player Award as Argentina claimed their third title at the expense of France.
Interest in Fernandez's services has become widespread, and while Liverpool and Manchester United were most heavily linked with him at one point, Chelsea are in pole position and a deal is expected to be wrapped up shortly.
Sources close to the deal have told 90min that there is a belief Benfica, who initially demanded Fernandez's €120m release be paid in full and up front, will now accept a bigger offer in the region of €130m in exchange for Chelsea paying it in several instalments.
Fernandez is facing disciplinary action from Benfica after missing training sessions this week, while it is hoped that the transfer can be wrapped up before their next game on January 6.
All parties are now waiting on Benfica chief Rui Costa to green-light the deal, but Chelsea believe an agreement to make Fernandez the fourth-most expensive footballer of all time is pretty much assured - only Philippe Coutinho (€145m to Barcelona), Kylian Mbappe (€180m to PSG) and Neymar (€222m to PSG) will have have been transferred for more than the Argentine.
Fernandez will also become the most expensive signing in Chelsea history, eclipsing the €115m fee paid to re-sign Romelu Lukaku from Inter in 2021.