Jose surprised many of at the weekend by giving a debut to recent Brazilian signing Kenedy.
Not only did many consider him to be a signing for the future, his appearance was surprising for the fact that he was thrown into a game that couldn’t have been closer – if anything his role was that of ‘hoping-he-makes-an-impact’ roll of the dice than any calculated move.
That’s very unlike Mourinho.
But then again Mourinho is rarely 1-0 down at home with 20 minutes to go.
And so 19 year old Kenedy (born in 1996!) was thrown into the action at left back for a whole 22 minutes in place of Cesar Azpilicueta – as if making your Chelsea debut wasn’t daunting enough, he was played in an unfamiliar position.
Granted it’s always difficult to make a judgement on a player who has spent so little on the pitch, but credit must go to Kenedy who seemed to make some impact showing enthusiasm, pace and attacking intent.
Kenedy Highlights vs Crystal Palace:
Here’s his Opta stats from the 2-1 defeat to Crystal Palace:
Shots on Target: 1
Pass Completion: 81.3%
Key Passes: 2
All in all a solid debut in tough circumstances and an unnatural position with Chelsea chasing a win.
We’re looking forward to seeing more of the young Brazilian and for once it’s pleasing to see that he’s not being sent out on loan never knowing when (or if) he’ll return to the first team fold.
I think I speak for all Chelsea fans when I say that I hope he grabs his opportunity with both hands. We’ll be watching with keen eyes.