Chelsea’s transfer window has gone swimmingly so far but the Blues’ preparations for the new season have taken a hit with negative news flooding the back pages concerning one of their youngsters.
21-year-old Brazilian winger Kenedy, who has made 15 Premier League appearances for the Blues, was heckled by fans in China after making comments on social media that many perceived to be xenophobic and racist.
The club swiftly issued an apology following the incident and have now taken action upon the player himself, sending him home prematurely from the club’s pre-season tour in China- raising questions as to whether he still has a future in West London.
Chelsea have arrived in Singapore ahead of their International Champions Cup clash with Bayern Munich, before then clashing with Inter Milan, but Kenedy’s punishment will push the South American further down the pecking order in Antonio Conte’s ranks.
After sending Kenedy home from Chelsea's tour in disgrace, the club has released this statement: pic.twitter.com/H9vH38aVVx
— Paddy Power (@paddypower) July 25, 2017
Whilst Kenedy issued an apology, his claim of his words being ‘an expression’ rather than racism suggest he doesn’t fully understand the extent of what’s going on and it’s the latest case in a long-line of incidents that indicate football has a big problem.
It was only last week that Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha took to social media to condemn ‘Liverpool and Manchester United’ fans for racially abusing him, whilst it’s now two-years since Jamie Vardy’s mishap in a Thailand casino.
Unfortunately the majority of cases see things swept under the carpet, illustrated by Jamie Vardy’s rise to hero status the following year as Leicester City won the Premier League, and it’s highly likely that Kenedy will just have to work his way up the ranks again.
Consistency is needed when dealing with these incidents and the Football Association needs to take their own action, as dealing with incidents internally isn’t good enough when it’s been published on social media for millions to see.