Wolverhampton Wanderers made a few statement signings during the summer transfer window. Bruno Lage brought in Matheus Nunes from Sporting Lisbon and Goncalo Guedes from Valencia in order to rejuvenate his team, although it hasn’t quite worked out so far.
It might have been different if the Portuguese manager had moved quicker to land an Argentinian talent during the transfer window, however…
The Molineux side were heavily linked with a move for Enzo Fernandez throughout the window but he eventually moved to Benfica for a fee of €10m (£9m) and the move is already beginning to look like a bargain.
The midfielder has started in all of Benfica’s 13 matches so far this season, which have produced 13 victories and he is asserting his dominance already.
The 21-year-old has even netted three times for the club and was arguably their standout performer during their impressive win over Juventus in the Champions League, where he made 96% of his attempted passes and won 12 of his 17 duels; a totally dominant midfield performance.
He is already worth £18m, 100% more than what Benfica paid for him due to these performances, and he would have been a big Joao Moutinho upgrade.
The Argentinian has completed over triple the number of passes than Moutinho this season (640 to 207) while also having a far greater passing accuracy percentage (89.89% to 85.19%) proving that at just 21 years of age, he can control the midfield with his passing skills, something the Portuguese veteran has done right throughout his career.
However, it is in an attacking sense where Fernandez poses a much greater threat.
He has scored once in the league (three goals in all competitions) with Moutinho failing to find the back of the net at all. The youngster also gives himself plenty of chances to add to his tally, having a total of 14 shots in just seven matches, with Moutinho not having a single shot at all this season.
For just £9m, Lage could have signed a prodigious young talent who has an exciting future ahead of him and got rid of the 35-year-old at the same time.
Journalist Graeme Bailey once described the player as “outstanding” and there is no doubt he would have majorly improved the dynamism of the Wolves midfield had they signed him. This is undeniably one that got away for the Old Gold hierarchy.