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Arsenal given huge Caicedo transfer boost as Premier League rivals renew interest in World Cup star

Arsenal given huge Caicedo transfer boost as Premier League rivals renew interest in World Cup star

The coast is clear.

Arsenal have been handed a huge boost in their pursuit of Moises Caicedo with reports that Chelsea have a new bid lined up for Enzo Fernandez.

Arsenal and Chelsea have been neck and neck for much of the January transfer window, with the Blues stealing Mykhailo Mudryk from Mikel Arteta's grasp earlier in the month.

And just as it looked as though the pair were on the brink of another bidding war involving Caicedo, the Blues have switched their attention back to Benfica star Fernandez.

Chelsea have been linked with Fernandez ever since his impressive displays for Argentina at the World Cup in Qatar. He went on to lift not only the trophy, but the Young Player of the Tournament award. He has a £105 million release clause at his current club.

However, talks involving the Blues collapsed following news that Benfica couldn't agree to the instalments Chelsea were insisting on paying for the 22-year-old, forcing Todd Boehly to pursue other options.

One of these was Caicedo, who they launched a £55m bid for earlier in the month, which was promptly rejected by the Seagulls, report GOAL.

Arsenal have since offered a reported £10 million more for the Ecuador international, as per the Daily Mail. The player publicly expressed his desire to join the Gunners - a theme we also saw with Mudryk.

But in a twist of events, Chelsea look to have resumed their pursuit of Fernandez.

Chelsea return for Fernandez

According to Record Portugal, Benfica president Rui Costa is keen to increase the value of Fernandez's release clause to €150M (£132m), fearing a Chelsea attack. He has also said to have promised the midfielder a further €2M (£1.8m) if he stays until the summer.

Chelsea are said to have not given up on Fernandez this month, and will return with a new offer.

Their latest bid is expected to be worth £87m and involve players within the deal, as per the same source. However, Rui Costa is thought to want to increase this to £105m.

The news will come as a huge boost to Arteta. Without competition, there looks to be a clear path to Caicedo. However, this is not to say that big-spending Chelsea can't sign both players.

Due to the way they have structured deals, ensuring signings are tied down to long-term contracts, further spending may be well within the laws of UEFA's Financial Fair Play Regulations.

That's according to FourFourTwo, who believe that Chelsea could spend more money in the coming days,

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Chelsea, Enzo Fernandez, Arsenal, Benfica, Brighton And Hove Albion, Mikel Arteta, Premier League, Football, Transfers, Primeira Liga