How Chelsea will line up with Enzo Fernandez

Karan Tejwani
Karan Tejwani
  • Updated: 31 Jan 2023 22:25 GMT
  • 3 min read
Enzo Fernandez, Chelsea, 2022/23

Chelsea will finally complete the signing of Benfica starlet Enzo Fernandez after weeks of negotiations with the Portuguese giants.

Multiple reports have confirmed the West London club have agreed a deal for the midfielder and he will join before the January window slams shut.

The Blues had initially refused to pay Benfica’s release clause at the start of the month but, with just hours remaining of the transfer window, they have come back in and made their move for Fernandez, with reports suggesting the fee will be paid in three payments spread across two years.

Fernandez made a huge name for himself at the World Cup, which he won with Argentina and he was named the Young Player of the Tournament.

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So, how will Chelsea line up with Fernandez in their side?

How Chelsea will line up with Enzo Fernandez

Graham Potter has alternated with between a back-three and four since his arrival but he appears likely to settle into a 4-2-3-1 to suit Fernandez and his January signings.

Chelsea will likely stick with Kepa Arrizabalaga in goal going forward after the Spaniard regained his position in the first team this season, ousting Edouard Mendy in the process.

In defence, Chelsea have plenty of options after bolstering their squad further this window with the signing of Benoit Badiashile and the £32m signing has relegated the likes of Kalidou Koulibaly and Trevoh Chalobah to the bench as he partners the evergreen Thiago Silva at centre-back.

Reece James is still Chelsea’s first-choice right-back when fit, with Malo Gusto rejoining Lyon on loan until the end of the season following the 19-year-old’s £30m signing this month, while Ben Chilwell’s injury concerns make Marc Cucurella an easy choice at left-back.

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Fernandez would instantly slot in at central midfield to replace Jorginho, who has joined Arsenal, while N’Golo Kante is Chelsea’s best defensive midfielder when he is fit, beating out the likes of Mateo Kovacic and Denis Zakaria.

Chelsea's projected line-up with Enzo Fernandez

Chelsea's projected line-up with Enzo Fernandez

Mykhailo Mudryk’s €100m signing earlier this month makes him an obvious contender on the left-wing, while the poor form of Mason Mount means he misses out on a place on the right flank at the expense of Raheem Sterling.

Joao Felix showed glimpses of quality before being sent off on his debut and he will likely feature in his preferred number 10 role behind Kai Havertz, who appears to be slowly finding his feet as a striker.

While the other January arrivals such as Datro David Fofana and Noni Madueke will certainly get their chances to impress, the signing of Fernandez brings some much-needed creativity to Chelsea’s side and Potter will likely stick to his preferred line-up before evaluating more wholesale changes as his side look to secure a European spot in the second half of the season.