Benfica reject £88m mystery transfer proposal for Enzo Fernandez

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Benfica have rejected a mystery opening proposal worth a whopping £88million for midfielder Enzo Fernandez, according to reports in Portugal. The Argentine technician was the breakout star of the tournament at the World Cup in Qatar as the 21-year-old picked up a winners’ medal and the Young Player of the Tournament award for his efforts on the field.

Fernandez proved to be a game-changer for Argentina as he helped them turn the game around against Mexico with a stunning goal in their second group match when they were staring elimination in the face.

From that moment, he did not look back, nailing down a starting berth in Lionel Scaloni’s side as they motored on to glory in the Middle East.

Portuguese newspaper Record are now reporting that Benfica have received their first proposal for Fernandez – worth an eye-watering £88m.

However, it was still not deemed enough by president Rui Costa, who decided to reject the mystery offer.

Instead, the ex-Portugal attacking midfielder will point potential buyers towards the player’s £105m release clause (€120m).

If they’re not willing to match that figure, the message is simple – they can forget about signing Fernandez.

Although it is not clear who made the proposal, Liverpool and Real Madrid are believed to be the two main contenders for Fernandez’s signature.

Jurgen Klopp is desperate for reinforcements in midfield due to his depleted ranks at Anfield.

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Veteran James Milner has already featured 19 times in all competitions this season due to Liverpool’s injury struggles.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Naby Keita, Curtis Jones and Arthur Melo have all missed considerable amounts of action due to various injuries.

It has left Liverpool light on the ground in the centre of the park, where there is an acceptance that reinforcements are required.

Liverpool’s top transfer target remains Jude Bellingham, who could cost up to £150m next summer at the end of the season.

That’s why there is doubt as to whether the Reds can afford both Fernandez and Bellingham – although both feel very much needed at this moment in time.

There has been some suggestion that Liverpool have a ‘pre-agreement’ with Fernandez’s reps over a deal but those claims are believed to be wide of the mark.

Real Madrid are continuing to build for the future and life without Luka Modric and Toni Kroos which is why Los Blancos cannot be ruled out in the race for Fernandez.

Last summer, Benfica pipped ahead of Wolves to land the now 21-year-old from River Plate for around £16m including add-ons.

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