Enzo Fernandez arrival causes second Chelsea casualty with reliable star at risk of sacrifice in swap deal

Chelsea players Mateo Kovacic and Denis Zakaria

Chelsea could lose one of their most dependable midfielders six months after the arrival of Enzo Fernandez after plans were drawn up for a summer swap deal, according to a report.

Fernandez recently became the most expensive signing in Chelsea and Premier League history. The midfielder’s move from Benfica represents an evolution of Chelsea’s midfield. Indeed, it allowed the Blues to sell Jorginho, up until that point a regular starter, to Arsenal.

But there could be further changes to Chelsea’s midfield in the summer. N’Golo Kante will be out of contract at the end of the season, when Denis Zakaria will also reach the end of his loan spell from Juventus.

Now, more information is arriving about what may happen with Zakaria. According to Calciomercatoweb, he could in fact stay at Chelsea on a permanent basis.

But Juventus are now trying to deprive Chelsea of another of their midfielders in order for that to happen.

Per the report, the Serie A side would like to sign former Inter Milan midfielder Mateo Kovacic in return for Zakaria to stay at Chelsea.

Juventus like the look of Kovacic as a potential successor to Leandro Paredes in their own squad, since they may return the Argentine to Paris Saint-Germain at the end of his own loan spell.

Interestingly, journalist Simon Phillips has recently said, via Give Me Sport, that Kovacic may want to head off for a new challenge.

Kovacic could be heading for Chelsea exit

Phillips said: “Kovacic, I think, I have been hearing that he’s been pondering a new challenge and pondering a move away.

“Whether Chelsea’s ambition in this window and going forward and the project changes his mind, I mean, it might, but from what I’m hearing, yeah, Kovacic is definitely one who could be going in the summer because Chelsea won’t want to let his contract run down, so they will look to get a fee for him.”

Combined with the information from Calciomercatoweb, it suggests there may be a chance of Kovacic ending up at Juventus.

In turn, Chelsea would get to keep Zakaria, who was beginning to work his way into the side until he picked up an injury recently. As things stand, the Switzerland international has only made four Premier League appearances.

Hence, it would be a risk for Chelsea to choose him over Kovacic, who has been one of their more reliable operators for a few years. He has totalled 206 appearances for the club so far.

But if the Croatian isn’t committed, it may help to evolve their squad. Still, another new arrival may be required, unless they can convince Kante to extend his contract.

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