Rafa Benitez admits it's decision time over Newcastle's move for Kenedy

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Rafa Benitez has admitted it would be "difficult" to sign Kenedy on loan.

The Chelsea winger is a longstanding target of the club, which tried to sign him last summer.

Newcastle were hopeful before this month's transfer window opened that they were close to a deal with the Premier League champions.

However, Chelsea manager Antonio Conte is not yet prepared to 21-year-old let Kenedy leave.

There is also interest in Kenedy – who played in this week's FA Cup tie against Norwich City and could face United in the fourth round of the competition next weekend – from Russia.

Asked if he had an update on the proposed move, United manager Benitez said: "No.

"We're in contact, and we know what the situation is and we have to decide, because everything is a little bit difficult."

Everton's Aaron Lennon, another of Newcastle's potential targets, this week agree to join Burnley.

Benitez – who revealed yesterday that owner Mike Ashley had pledged to back him in the window – had hoped that the club would do its transfer business by now.

“We're not where we wanted to be," said Benitez. "Sometimes, you go for a player and he is not available.

"Sometimes, they ask for things that you cannot give them. And sometimes, it's because you have to go a little bit faster."