Liverpool will have to stump up a ‘crazy’ fee if they want to lure Benfica star Enzo Fernandez to Anfield next month, transfer guru Fabrizio Romano has told GiveMeSport.
Reds boss Jurgen Klopp will be handed an opportunity to strengthen his squad when the winter window opens for business at the turn of the year.
Liverpool transfer news – Enzo Fernandez
According to Argentinian media outlet La Capital, Liverpool have accelerated their plans and signed a pre-agreement which will see Fernandez head to Merseyside next summer.
The report suggests the Reds were keen to move quickly as Premier League rivals Manchester United and Manchester City have also been in the hunt for the Benfica midfielder’s signature.
But it is not a done deal yet and RMC, via Get French Football News, have revealed that Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea, Arsenal and Inter Milan have been in discussions with Fernandez’s agent.
Daily Express journalist Ryan Taylor recently told GiveMeSport that Liverpool are long-term admirers of the Argentina international, having taken an initial interest during the summer.
Fernandez has a release clause worth close to £106million written into his Benfica contract and meeting that figure would result in Liverpool comfortably shattering their record transfer fee.
What has Fabrizio Romano said about Fernandez?
Romano understands that Benfica are desperate to hold onto Fernandez for the remainder of the season and, as a result, Liverpool will have to put forward a lucrative proposal to stand a chance of striking a January deal.
The respected journalist is aware that the Portuguese giants want to keep their key men, including Goncalo Ramos, on board as they prepare to battle it out in the knockout stages of the Champions League.
Romano told GiveMeSport: “Benfica are not open to letting Fernandez go in January – they want something crazy. Also, he has a release clause of €120million.
“They want Enzo Fernandez and Goncalo Ramos to be part of the squad for the second half of the season in the Champions League after winning the group.”
Should Liverpool look to sign Fernandez in January?
There is no doubt that Fernandez will have caught the eye of Europe’s biggest clubs after he played a key role in Argentina winning the World Cup earlier this month.
According to WhoScored, the 21-year-old was his nation’s fourth-best performer in Qatar as he was handed an average match rating of 7.06, while he also clinched the Young Player of the Tournament award.
The accolade underlines how talented Fernandez is and he also started the season in fine form for Benfica, chalking up eight goal contributions in 24 appearances.
FBref statistics show the South American has averaged more goals, assists and shots, along with a better pass completion ratio, per 90 minutes than current Liverpool midfielders Thiago Alcantara and Jordan Henderson this term.
That highlights how Fernandez could make the Reds a greater threat in the final third of the pitch, so Klopp should do all he can to win the race for his signature and activating his release clause in January may be the best option.