Rafa Benitez says that Matt Ritchie would have taken Newcastle’s controversial injury-time penalty against Cardiff, had he still been on the pitch, and not Kenedy.
Newcastle United failed to register their first win of the season when Kenedy missed a penalty in the 95th minute of a goalless match.
The Brazilian has a terrible afternoon, he became the first player since Nikola Kalinic in 2010 to play an entire half of football without completing a single successful pass.
0 – Kenedy failed to complete a single pass in the first half against Cardiff City – he is the first outfield Premier League player to fail to complete a single pass in 45+ minutes of play since Nikola Kalinic against Birmingham City in March 2010. Passenger. pic.twitter.com/6EZbhRNI9B
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) August 18, 2018
Kenedy was also lucky to avoid a red card in the first half after the referee missed him aiming a kick at Victor Camarasa.
The opportunity came for the Brazilian to redeem himself only for the keeper to produce his second penalty save in successive matches.
After the match, manager Rafael Benitez explained why he took the penalty, according to the Metro.
“Kenedy was the designated penalty taker,” Benitez explained afterwards. “First it was Matt Ritchie [who came off] but then it was Kenedy.”
“It was a poor penalty, he’s not happy he missed a good chance.”
“We win as a team and lose as a team, I am not concerned about the fact he missed a penalty, he has to take responsibility.”