Chelsea accepts deal for Fernandez worth record-breaking £106 million

Argentina midfielder Enzo Fernandez of Benfica has signed a contract worth a British record 120 million euros (£106 million) with Chelsea.

Although the contract has not yet been signed, paperwork is being prepared in order to complete the transaction before Tuesday at 23:00 GMT for Premier League clubs.

The agreement exceeds the £100 million that Manchester City spent on Jack Grealish in 2021.

During Argentina’s World Cup victory in Qatar, Fernandez, who just recently joined Benfica for an estimated £10 million, was named young player of the competition.

According to the trade database Transfermarkt, Chelsea’s January spending increased to £288m with the addition of the 22-year-old.

That comes after an expenditure of £292 million in the summer, which set a record for a British club in the summer window.

It is comparable to the 120 million euros that Barcelona paid for France forward Antoine Griezmann in 2019 and ranks as the joint-sixth most expensive signing of all time.

Previous most expensive signings by British clubs
Player Fee (year) Club joining Club leaving
Jack Grealish £100m (2021) Manchester City Aston Villa
Romelu Lukaku £97.5m (2021) Chelsea Inter Milan
Paul Pogba £89m (2016) Manchester United Juventus
Antony £82m (2022) Manchester United Ajax
Harry Maguire £80m (2019) Manchester United Leicester City
Romelu Lukaku £75m (2017) Manchester United Everton
Virgil van Dijk £75m (2017) Liverpool Southampton
Jadon Sancho £73m (2021) Manchester United Borussia Dortmund

Fernandez has four goals in 29 games for the Primeira Liga team since being acquired by Benfica from Argentine club River Plate.

He had one goal during the World Cup, which came in Argentina’s 2-0 victory over Mexico in the group stage.

Noni Madueke, Mykhailo Mudryk, David Datro Fofana, Andrey Santos, Benoit Badiashile, and Malo Gusto were all acquired by Chelsea in January on long-term contracts.

Joao Felix, on loan from Atletico Madrid, has also been added.

After 20 games, the Blues sit in 10th place in the Premier League, 10 points outside of the Champions League spots.

The club was acquired for £4.25 billion by a group led by American investor Todd Boehly in May of last year after Roman Abramovich, the previous owner, was punished for his connections to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

World’s Top Transfer Fees

Neymar [Barcelona – Paris St-Germain] £200m in 2017

Kylian Mbappe [Monaco – Paris St-Germain] £166m in 2017

Philippe Coutinho [Liverpool – Barcelona] £142m in 2018

Ousmane Dembele [Borussia Dortmund – Barcelona] total fee of £135m in 2017

Joao Felix [Benfica – Atletico Madrid] £113m in 2019

Antoine Griezmann [Atletico Madrid to Barcelona] £107m in 2019

Enzo Fernandez [Benfica to Chelsea] £106m in 2023

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