Chelsea FC Sign Enzo Fernandez from Benfica for Record €121 million

Enzo Fernandez is celebrating a record deal…

Chelsea FC has signed the 22-year-old Argentine professional footballer from Benfica after meeting the midfielder’s €121 million (£106.8m) release clause, the Portuguese side announced on Tuesday.

Enzo FernandezA statement from Benfica confirmed that a deal had been reached between the clubs over how Chelsea would pay the release fee for Fernandez, who has signed an eight-and-a-half year contract.

The deal breaks the previous Premier League record fee of £100m that Manchester City paid for Jack Grealish when he joined from Aston Villa in 2021.

 

Chelsea were still to confirm the deal, but according to reports in England the paperwork had been submitted on time and before the transfer deadline at 2300 GMT on Tuesday.

Fernandez impressed for Argentina as they won the 2022 World Cup and was named the Young Player of the Tournament.

ESPN reported on Monday that Fernandez had already agreed personal terms with Chelsea and was pushing the Portuguese club hard to reach an agreement with the Blues.

He becomes Chelsea’s seventh signing of a busy January transfer window, following Benoit BadiashileDavid Datro FofanaAndrey SantosMykhailo MudrykNoni Madueke and Malo Gusto into the club.

Benfica boss Roger Schmidt was not keen on seeing Fernandez leave, but had previously said their hands would be tied if a club paid the player’s release clause.

Fernandez moved from Argentine side River Plate to Benfica in 2022 and has played 29 times in all competitions, scoring four goals and grabbing seven assists.

The deal takes Chelsea’s total outlay on players since last year’s takeover by an investment group led by Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital to more than £500m.

Chelsea are 10th in the Premier League, 10 points adrift of a top-four spot. They next host local rivals Fulham on Friday.

Ozuna to Perform at the 2022 FIFA World Cup Closing Ceremony

Ozuna is heading to Qatar…

The 30-year-old Puerto Rican singer will perform at the 2022 FIFA World Cup closing ceremony, FIFA has announced.

OzunaThe event, where Argentina and France will play for the trophy, will be held on Sunday, December 18, at the Lusail Stadium in Qatar.

Since August, Ozuna has been making the rounds with his track “Arhbo” alongside French-Congolese rapper Gims, which is part of the official FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 soundtrack.

The feel-good collaboration is named after the local slang word for “welcome” in Qatar, which “perfectly embodies the welcoming spirit” of the Arabian country that has been hosting the World Cup since November 20.

“Arhbo” hit No. 1 on the Billboard Latin Airplay chart dated December 17 after arriving in the top 10 last week. This marks Gims’ first No. 1 title on any U.S. chart.

“I think ‘Bienvenidos’, ‘welcome home’ says it all,” Ozuna previously said in a press statement. “Whatever journey everyone was on, it brought them here, to this moment, and for that moment they are home. They say that ‘home is where the heart is, right? El hogar está donde está el corazón. For all the people who are coming, and all the people who — with all their hearts — want to come, we are saying, ‘bienvenidos’, welcome home!”

Although Puerto Rico was not one of the 32 countries that played at the World Cup, Ozuna has been very much involved with the tournament.

In addition to being a part of the FIFA soundtrack, the “Hey Mor” singer teamed up with Coca-Cola Puerto Rico for limited-edition collectible cans, with 14 different designs representing some of the participating countries.

In addition, the initiative will promote the development of sports on the island by allocating a donation of $50,000 for the rehabilitation of soccer fields in San Juan.

Maluma Teaming Up with Nicki Minaj & Myriam Fares to Release New World Cup Anthem “Tukoh Taka”

Maluma is getting into the World Cup spirit…

The 28-year-old Colombian singer, songwriter and actor is joining voices with Nicki Minaj and Lebanese artist Myriam Fares to release a new official World Cup anthem this Friday, November 18, according to FIFA.

MalumaThe single will be released via Universal Arabic Music/Universal Music Group/ Republic Records.

Titled “Tukoh Taka,” the track will make history as the first FIFA World Cup song featuring English, Spanish and Arabic lyrics.

The cross-continental collaboration features a high-energy synergy between Minaj, Maluma and Fares as they rap and sing about uniting fans worldwide and celebrating together.

Fans can also expect a “cinematic” music video premiere to accompany the track that same day.

This year, FIFA has released a handful of official songs for the 2022 World Cup. The first song released was the uplifting track “Hayya Hayya (Better Together),” featuring Trinidad Cardona, Davido and Aisha, which fuses R&B and reggae influences. For the first time ever, the tournament’s soundtrack will feature a multi-song collection, with international artists “showcasing diverse musical genres that span the world, setting the tone for a truly global celebration,” according to FIFA.

In 1990, almost sixty years after the first-ever edition of the World Cup, the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) began to adopt songs that would become the official soundtrack of the global soccer event, which happens every four years.

The 2022 FIFA World Cup kicks off on November 20 with host nation Qatar’s tournament opener against Ecuador. A total of 32 teams representing different countries will participate. In the end, one is crowned the World Cup champion on December 18.

Gio Reyna & His U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team Mates to Be Subject of World Cup-Themed Docuseries

Gio Reyna’s World Cup preparations are headed to the small screen…

The U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team (USMNT) will be the subject of a new documentary series as they gear up for the international soccer competition featuring the 19-year-old half-Argentine American soccer player and his teammates.

Giovanni Reyna Park Stories and H.wood Media have teamed up with the U.S. Soccer Federation and Soccer United Marketing on the untitled all-access docuseries.

The series is expected to launch on a streamer around the Qatar World Cup in November.

The series will bring fans into the locker room and visit the players in their hometowns as they prepare for the tournament.

The team is competing in its first World Cup since 2014 and has an exciting team of youngsters including Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic, JuventusWeston McKennie, Barcelona’s Sergiño Dest and Borussia Dortmund’s Reyna.

Led by head coach Gregg Berhalter, the first person in U.S. history to represent the country at the World Cup as a player and a head coach, the team will fight it out against England, Wales and Iran in the group stages.

They kick off against Gareth Bale-led Wales on November 21 before facing Euros finalists England on the day after Thanksgiving before competing against Iran on November 29.

The games will air on Fox and Telemundo.

The docuseries is exec produced by Rand Getlin and Janina Pelayo for Park Stories, and John Terzian, Jeremy Allen and Brian Toll are producing for H.wood Media.

The show is directed by Getlin and Luke Korver, and Nikle Guzijan will co-produce.

“Five billion people are projected to tune in for the 2022 World Cup, and this team has the potential to impact each of them in profoundly transformative ways,” said directors Getlin and Korver. “We know it starts with their play on the field, but we’re most excited for viewers to see them as sons, brothers, fathers and leaders who care deeply about their loved ones and bringing the world closer together.”

After representing the United States at several youth levels, Reyna received his first call up to the senior United States squad for matches against Wales and Panama in November 2020.. On November 12, 2020, a day before his 18th birthday, Reyna made his senior national team debut against Wales. In the following game, a 6–2 friendly victory over Panama, Reyna started and scored his first senior goal directly from a free kick.

FIFA Approves Julian Araujo’s Switch From United States to Mexico

Julian Araujo is switching (international) sides…

After playing one game for the United States, the 20-year-old Mexican American defender has been cleared to change his national eligibility to Mexico, according to FIFA.

Julian Araujo

The LA Galaxy defender made his debut for the U.S. last December, starting at right back in a 6-0 win over El Salvador.

Araujo, who is from Lompoc, California, previously represented the U.S. at age-group levels through the Under-23 team.

In March, he played for the U.S. U23 team against Mexico in a 2020 Tokyo Games qualification game.

Mexico won 1-0 and eventually advanced to Tokyo, getting a bronze medal.

As a dual national with Mexican family ties, Araujo was eligible within FIFA’s rules to switch national teams and was yet to play a competitive game for the U.S. senior team.

“My heart is with Mexico,” Araujo said in a statement on Tuesday. “I’m grateful for every opportunity that U.S. Soccer has provided me to help me grow as a soccer player and now I am excited to continue my international career with Mexico.”

Mexico faces the U.S. in their 2022 World Cup quaIification group on November 12 in Cincinnati.