Chelsea's Kenedy joins Newcastle on loan, Emerson deal near
Chelsea wing-back Kenedy has joined Newcastle on loan for the rest of the season, the Premier League champions have announced.
Kenedy was granted permission to seek regular first-team football at St James' Park with Chelsea set to complete a permanent deal for Roma left-back Emerson Palmieri, who will provide squad cover and competition for Marcos Alonso.
Sent home in disgrace from Chelsea's preseason tour of the Far East last summer for making derogatory comments about China on social media, Kenedy was only kept at Stamford Bridge at the request of coach Antonio Conte after the club failed in their attempts to sign Alex Sandro from Juventus.
But the 21-year-old has since made just five appearances for Chelsea in all competitions and not earned a single minute in the Premier League, with Alonso ever-present in Conte's starting XI.
Speaking about Kenedy in a news conference on Tuesday, Conte said: "At this moment of his career he needs to play with great regularity, and to go to Newcastle this is a great challenge for him.
"I think this way is a good way for the club. We used the same method for [Andreas] Christensen, and now he's a Chelsea player always playing in the starting XI. I think this is a good opportunity for him.
"But, at the same time, he must know he must fight. He must be ready to fight to play in Newcastle. Don't forget, last season in the first half of the season, Kenedy played only 24 minutes at Watford. But now, I think he's more ready. He played with us many games, and now he can show his potentiality going on loan."
Kenedy joined Chelsea from Fluminense in his native Brazil in 2015. He went on loan to Watford last season.
"Kenedy is a player that we have been following since the summer," Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez said. "The reason we are interested is that he can play in several positions -- as a winger, a wing-back and also as an offensive left full-back, so he gives the team many options.
""He has a great left foot and good energy. He is still a young player but he has some experience already in the Premier League and that will help with his adaptation. We welcome him to Newcastle United."
Liam is ESPN FC's Chelsea correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @Liam_Twomey.