Chelsea have gathered a huge following across the world over the past couple decades, timing perfectly our own emergence as a world footballing power (just don't look at the table right now) with the Premier League's emergence as the world's number one football brand.
One such new fan was Brazilian attacking midfielder Kenedy, who used to play with Chelsea in his video games and now finds himself playing next to his idols in real life, too. Kenedy has used this video game line before, but it remains no less adorable now than it was back in the summer. Thanks, EA Sports & Playstation!
"Ever since I was a child, I dreamed about playing for Chelsea. And I left [Brazil] for a big challenge, that is to play in the Premier League."
"You play in videogames, you see those beautiful stadiums and crowds. Especially Chelsea's, that is quite beautiful. And when you step on a pitch like that for the first time, you get goosebumps."
"Sometimes I stop and think... 'Holy s***, today I'm playing next to [John Terry] when I was playing with him in my video game only a while ago'."
Kenedy arrived in England as a natural right winger, but José Mourinho has deemed that far too boring and has looked to utilize the youngster's skillset at other positions across the pitch, too. And while Kenedy may not exactly be a natural left back or be particularly good at it, even, all that matters for him is getting to be on the pitch, no matter where he might be playing:
"[José Mourinho] tested me as a centre back and as a full back, and I played there. For me, what matters is to be able to play, no matter the position."
"I hope to stay many years in England scoring goals and commemorating them with Chelsea's marvelous supporters."
-Kenedy; Source: ESPN Brasil
[Ed.note: what the ... center back!?]
Still just 19, Kenedy has made 6 appearances (2 starts) so far this season, scoring 1 goal and generally being a breath of fresh air with his direct and physical approach to the game. He's obviously still a very raw player, but as we've seen, he's willing to play just about anywhere on the pitch while working hard for his opportunities.
With plenty of promise shown on the pitch and a great mentality showcased off of it, the future looks bright for the young Brazilian. Hopefully, we'll get to see him develop right alongside all the other exciting youngsters in the organization.