Kenedy began last season in disgrace in China, ended it full of grace north of The Wall, and in between transformed himself from something of a pariah into a much-desired loanee. Newcastle wanted him back, RB Leipzig, PSG and Bayern were reportedly also interested in borrowing him.
Newcastle always looked like the front-runner because Kenedy became enamored of “father” Rafa Benitez, who freed him the shackles of playing wing-back and let him roam further forward on the left wing. Everyone involved loved how the loan worked out for the Magpies’ March Player of the Month.
The Mail claims that a season-long return is now imminent.
Kenedy scored just two goals on Tyneside in his half-season loan, but his pace and direct play gave the team something they badly needed. With owner Mike Ashley’s pursestrings as tight as ever, Benitez was unlikely to find someone better whom he could afford, so another loan suits him nicely.
Local newsers The Evening Chronicle splash a little cold water on the rumor, but not too much. They say negotiations are still ongoing. Those might involve what happens if the loan is successful again. Kenedy is just 22 and his contract expires in 2020. Could there be some loan-to-buy deal in the works? (The Blues would take £20m for him, apparently.) Perhaps with a Chelsea buyback attached? If so, then it makes sense that talks could drag out for a while. Chelsea are good at doing that.