Chelsea, Manchester United and Inter Milan have all been busy trying to cement the services of the latest pretender to Neymar’s Brazil throne.
He may not sound particularly Brazilian, but by all accounts Robert Kenedy certainly plays like one.
The 19-year-old Fluminese striker first caught the eye of Europe’s elite clubs when he top-scored at the 2013 U17 South American Championships with six goals.
Since then Kenedy has been a marked man and latest reports suggest it’s Premier League winners Chelsea who are in pole position to sign him this summer.
The lightning quick teenager is blessed with an athletic physique which belies his years and his reputation as a future star in Brazil is equally sizeable.
The Fluminese forward has made over 20 appearances for the first team, scoring five times and although the club will be reluctant to lose him, a deal rich with add-ons is likely to soften the blow.
He tends to operate on the right of a front three for the Brazilian top-flight outfit and his national team’s U20s, where he often cuts in from the right onto his favoured left foot.
Although Chelsea appear to have held off the challenge of Man Utd and Inter, turning Kenedy out in a blue shirt won’t be happening anytime soon.
Because of issues surrounding work permits, the London club will have to loan Kenedy out to another European side for a season before being able to take him to Stamford Bridge.
If he does eventually arrive, Kenedy appears delighted at the prospect of hooking up with Chelsea’s strong contingent of fellow countrymen.
“Of course I am happy to play for Fluminense but it is my ambition to one day play in Europe”, said Kenedy in 2013. “I like Chelsea because of players like Oscar and Ramires. I like the whole team.”
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