'What he did wasn't right' - Benfica boss Schmidt explains decision to drop Chelsea-linked Enzo Fernandez in transfer update

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Enzo Fernandez Benfica Braga 2022-23
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Benfica manager Roger Schmidt has explained why he dropped Chelsea target Enzo Fernandez from his matchday squad against Portimonense on Friday.
  • Enzo Fernandez dropped from squad
  • Benfica manager explains
  • Linked with a move to Chelsea

WHAT HAPPENED? The midfielder missed training during the course of the week having returned to his home country Argentina for New Year's Eve celebrations and was subsequently left out by Schmidt. The player is also the subject of intense transfer interest from Chelsea, although talks with Benfica have stalled over the fee.

WHAT THEY SAID: After the victory over Portimonense, the Benfica boss told B24: "Now you have a clean slate. He is our player, we count on him and we need him to be champions. What he did wasn't right, that's why he wasn't in the team today."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Fernandez has been strongly linked with a move to Chelsea in the ongoing January transfer window. The Blues have reportedly made a bid of £100m ($120m), but the Portuguese club have made it clear that they won't accept a cent less than the £106m (€120m/$127m) buyout clause in Fernandez's contract.

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Roger Schmidt Benfica


Enzo Fernandez

WHAT NEXT FOR ENZO? Schmidt made it clear that Fernandez is an important part of his plans and he is likely to be next seen in action in a Taca de Portugal round of 16 clash against Varzim on January 10.