Man Utd ready to activate release clause of major Liverpool midfield target after standout World Cup campaign
Manchester United have joined the race for Argentina midfielder Enzo Fernandez, despite his strong links with Liverpool, according to reports.
Fernandez was a prominent member of the squad that won the World Cup for Argentina earlier this month. The success continued a remarkable year for him after he also earned a big move to Europe by joining Benfica from River Plate.
Already, the attention has been turning to where Fernandez might end up next. He seems capable of taking another step up in his career, potentially to the Premier League.
In that case, Liverpool have been heavily linked with the 21-year-old amid their need to strengthen in midfield. He could become a more reliable successor to the likes of Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, whose contracts are among those that expire in 2023.
However, although Liverpool have learned that they would be Fernandez’s priority destination, Anfield is not the only arena he could come to call his home.
There has been plenty of interest in Fernandez from across Europe, including elsewhere in England. And according to UOL, Man Utd are now ready to make a strong move to sign him.
Per the report, Man Utd would be willing to meet the €120million (£105.7million) release clause in Fernandez’s contract with Benfica. By doing so, they could bypass negotiations and put the decision in the hands of the player himself.
It would be a record-breaking deal for the club, but Fernandez has a bright future ahead of him.
Man Utd midfield evolution could continue with Enzo Fernandez
Man Utd have already been modifying their midfield in recent months by signing Casemiro and Christian Eriksen. Adding someone like Fernandez could represent the next phase of their evolution in that territory.
The news is particularly interesting after another current option in Erik ten Hag’s midfield, Fred, was also linked with a departure from Old Trafford. Thus, there might be a requirement for more options in the position.
Liverpool do remain in strong contention for Fernandez too, per UOL. Hence, it could be an interesting battle for his signature, potentially as soon as January.
Fernandez is under contract with Benfica until 2027. He has made 24 appearances for the club so far, contributing three goals and five assists.
It remains to be seen if he will add many more at all before the next step of his career is due.
READ MORE: Man Utd ready to submit €30m bid for new right-back after board gives green light to signing of ‘solid competition’ for Dalot