Although Kenedy wanted to stay in Rio and fight to make his Flamengo loan work out for the better for him, Chelsea did not want to wait and see what would happen with the 2022 season in Brazil beginning in less than two weeks. The Blues chose to recall him from the loan seven months ahead of its expiration, as they were likely emboldened by Flamengo’s lack of response upon being asked whether they would activate Kenedy’s €10m buying option.
While the official announcement makes it sound as if manager Thomas Tuchel might use him as cover to our left flank of defence follow Ben Chilwell’s knee injury and absence from the remainder of the season, media reports make us believe otherwise. He was recently linked to Ukranian team Shakhtar Donetsk, and it would not be a surprise if he ends up there this winter.
During his five-month stay at Flamengo, Kenedy played 18 matches and scored a single goal. The team’s lack of direction under the command of Renato Gaúcho did not help, as he could not contribute to salvage their Brazilian League title defence, nor their Copa Libertadores run in which they lost in the finals to Palmeiras, 2-1.
From this point on, hopes of Kenedy making any further impact at Chelsea following a few opportunities given by José Mourinho, Guus Hiddink and Antonio Conte are slim. But never say never!
Welcome back, Kenedy!