Young defender Jonjoe Kenny will spend the 2019-20 season out in Germany after being sent out on loan to Schalke 04.
The 22-year-old has found starting opportunities scant at Everton following the return to fitness and form of veteran Seamus Coleman. Over the 2018-19 season, Kenny featured in just fourteen games, picking up one assist. In all, he has played 39 times for the Toffees’ senior side after making his debut right at the end of the 2016-17 season.
Schalke are going to be managed next season by David Wagner, who was recently let go by Huddersfield Town before they got relegated this season. Wagner is very familiar with Kenny having come up against him during his time in the Premier League.
Director of Sport Jochen Schneider has led the negotiations from the Schalke side, and beat Crystal Palace and Burnley to Kenny’s signature in the last couple of weeks.
Speaking of the move, Schneider said:
“We are very happy that we have been able to get Jonjoe Kenny at FC Schalke 04. With this signing, we have filled the hole at right-back and completed one of our aims of the summer.
“My thanks go to technical director Michael Reschke, the scouting team and our head coach David Wagner, who knows Jonjoe from the Premier League.”
The Gelsenkirchen side limped to a 14th placed finish in last season’s Bundesliga, and will look to make upward strides next season. Schalke bizarrely have no natural right-backs on their squad, and Kenny should head right into the starting XI. Veteran Sascha Riether is out of contract this summer, and midfielder Daniel Caligiuri has been right wingback for most of the season, and deputized as rightback whenever a back-four was employed.
Kenny is looking forward to his spell in Germany, saying:
“It is a big chance for me, to come to a new country and show off my abilities, especially at a big club like Schalke.
Schalke 04 is a club with a long history and fantastic fans. I am happy to be here and can’t wait to get up and running with the team.”
Two years ago the Kirkdale-born lad had captained the Under-23 squad to their first ever Premier League 2 title, a feat that the youngsters repeated this season. This is a good opportunity for him to hone his defensive ability while improving his attacking game and returning to the Blues a much more polished player. Here’s wishing Kenny all the best on his stint in Germany.