Benfica requested Chelsea include £40m player in deal for Enzo Fernandez

enzo fernandez

Benfica wanted Chelsea to include Mateo Kovacic as part of the deal to sign Enzo Fernandez, according to reports.

Chelsea were in tense negotiations with Benfica for a number of weeks as they struggled to reach an agreement for Argentina midfielder.

In the closing hours of the January transfer window, the Blues eventually broke the British transfer record as they completed a €121m (£107m) deal for Fernandez.

During discussions with Benfica, Chelsea had offered a couple of players as part of the deal including Hakim Ziyech, whose move to Paris Saint-Germain collapsed on deadline day.

According to Record, the only player Benfica requested during talks was Kovacic, however, the Chelsea midfielder’s salary made it ‘impossible’ for the club.

The report also added that Fernandez ‘threatened’ to post a video on social media in which he would criticise Benfica’s hierarchy for preventing his move to Stamford Bridge.

Meanwhile, Graham Potter is adamant that Fernandez has the right personality to be a success at Chelsea.

‘I can understand it but every transfer is a gamble,’ Potter said.

‘If you look at the market for midfield players, and midfield players that haven’t won the World Cup, you’ll be quoted a lot of money. We’ve got a player with a huge personality – he played in midfield for Argentina who won the World Cup.

‘He has attributes that can help him play in any league in the world. He has already played well in the Champions League and we followed him before the World Cup, we knew about him anyway. So we’re confident about the personality.

‘It’s like anything: he’s still a young person, he’s still a young man coming to this country. You’ve got to adapt to the club. But we’ll help him with that and his personality is one where you think, ‘oh, I’ve got no worries about him’.

‘He’s a fighter and I think he understands how fortunate he is. He fights for the team, has courage, is not afraid, and is open-minded.

‘He wants to improve and if you’re playing as the No.6 for Argentina, playing the big games at his age, and with the quality, it’s not easy to have those attributes.’



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