The Hard Tackle brings you a roundup of some of the news regarding Premier League leaders Chelsea FC.
Kenedy Set For Flamengo Loan
The first soldier in Chelsea’s ‘loan army’ in the news today is Kenedy. According to ESPN Brasil, the 20-year-old winger may be heading to back to his native country on loan, with Brazilian top flight side Flamengo reportedly interested in the youngster.
Conte previously stated that he would take some time to assess Kenedy’s current situation, before deciding whether to let him go on loan for the remainder of the campaign, but that hasn’t stopped the Mengão from making preliminary contact with Chelsea.
The former Fluminense man was subject to a recall by the Blues last month after failing to make any significant impact at Watford in his first 6 months at Vicarage Road under Walter Mazzarri.
The Brazilian only managed to make 1 appearance for the Hornets this term, which came in a 15 minute cameo in their 2-0 loss to Burnley. He was never really given an opportunity to make his mark at the club and a knee injury he picked up in October, further added to his misery.
One of Chelsea’s most promising performers from their disastrous 2015/16 campaign, he made 20 appearances and scored 2 goals. A lot of those appearances came at left back due to Chelsea’s lack of options in that position and it was a chance for the youngster to showcase his versatility.
While this season may not have gone according to plan, his ability remains undoubted and a move back to his home country may be just what he needs to get his career back on track as he tries to impress Antonio Conte.
Piazon Extends Fulham Stay
Kenedy’s compatriot, and now Chelsea loan army veteran Lucas Piazon, has extended his stay at Fulham and will spend the remainder of the campaign at Craven Cottage. The announcement was made on Fulham’s official website yesterday.
Piazon was visibly pleased at the decision, saying: “The last couple of weeks we have been waiting on it, and today finally everything was done. I signed all the paperwork so I can stay until the end of the season, which is good news.”
Chelsea have a surplus of attackers, so it comes as no surprise they let him stay: “I spoke with Fulham a few weeks ago and then with my agents, and they told Chelsea that I wanted to stay,” he said. “They said it was fine as it’s a good option for me, so they agreed and it wasn’t a big issue.”
Currently on his fifth different loan spell since 2013, Piazon has seemingly settled in well at Craven Cottage. He has scored 4 goals in 17 appearances in all competitions this term and more importantly, he has featured regularly this term for Slaviša Jokanović’s side.
Pasalic’s Agent Remains Coy On Chelsea Return
Another Chelsea loanee in the news is Mario Pasalic, currently on loan at AC Milan. In a recent interview with Calciomercato, the 21-year-old’s agent has refused to rule out the possibility of a permanent stay at AC Milan for his client, at the end of the current campaign.
After a difficult start to the campaign, Pasalic has managed to break into Vincenzo Montella’s first team and is now a regular starter for the Rossoneri. He has made 11 appearances in all competitions this term, including AC Milan’s Supercoppa victory against Juventus in December.
Speaking about his client’s future post the end of the season, Pasalic’s agent Marko Naletilic said: “Pasalic has joined AC Milan in a dry loan deal, which means his future is in Chelsea’s hands. We respect them a lot as we do respect AC Milan.”
Rumours were linking Pasalic with a return to stamford Bridge in January as Conte looked to boost his midfield, but after Chelsea’s resurgence in October and Pasalic settling into the club, his agent insists that there is no rush to decide his destination at the end of the season just yet.
“There are three parties interested: us, AC Milan and Chelsea. Mario is very happy about his situation here and is coming to terms with Italian football. He’s settling in well and he’s a big fan of AC Milan. Said that, there is plenty of time to talk we are in no rush.”