We Hope Ben Arfa Will Thrive at St James’ Park

Chris Hughton has talked about a player who has been setting Newcastle alight these last few weeks,  but he didn’t appear on Wednesday night at Stamford Bridge in that brilliant Newcastle win – Hatem Ben Arfa.

Hatem Ben Arfa – will start on Sunday

We know from his own comments that Ben Arfa was anxious to play at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday evening, but Chris held him back and will unleash the young football talent against Stoke City on Sunday afternoon at St. James’ Park.

This is what Chris said about our French International whiz kid today:

“He’s a talented player, and I very much hope he’ll thrive at St James’ Park.” “There’s no doubt he’s got ability on the ball.”  “The most important thing is what he is able to bring to the team.”

“The Premier League’s a hard league – it’s very, very tough – but I think he’ll be a real asset.” “There’ll be ample opportunities for him to show that.”

There have been a few articles out there in the gossip press, about how bad the youngster has been so far in his career, and how he will upset things on Tyneside. And of course most of the gossip papers would just love it – if indeed Ben Arfa acts himself at Newcastle – because it will help to sell their papers.  It’s that simple and they often write about what they hope will happen.

But hey, we don’t believe he will misbehave, and if any manager can set the lad on the right path, and keep him on the straight and narrow, and concentrating only on his football – it’s a certain  Chris Hughton.

After playing the game at the highest levels himself, and having 15 years of coaching experience under his belt, Chris knows all too well about what the players need, and want to aspire to.

Chris seems to be able to handle all types of personalities and he seems able to concentrate their talents on how it can best help the team.

We have every confidence that Ben Arfa will behave himself on Tyneside, and become a big success, so he can become a long term and potentially great addition to the Newcastle United squad.

We’re sure he wants to do that himself, and he could well become one of  Newcastle’s best ever signings.

We hope he does .

Comments welcome.

15 comments so far

  • Thump

    Sep 24, 2010 at 12:33 PM

    Comment #1

    If he can work consistency into his game, he’ll be outstanding.

  • ben arfa in toon

    Sep 24, 2010 at 12:39 PM

    Comment #2

    great article ed. I agree Thump mate if can be consistent and we are successful together as a team he will be a great signing and great demo of CH ability to temper and channel players in the right direction.

  • Davies

    Sep 24, 2010 at 12:54 PM

    Comment #3

    I wonder if Hoots will become as well know for his man management as Keegan was back in the 90s. I hope so, because he is also better tactically minded than Keegan was. He looks at what is needed for each match and sets out his stall accordingly. As such, we’ve only lost six competitive games under his guidance. Not bad.

    I think he get s the best out of the likes of Barton and (hopefully) Ben Arfa becuase they want to play for him. He seems like a genuinely nice man, and they really don’t want to let him down.

    I said the same thing in another thread about Ben Arfa and finished by saying that Newcastle best bit of business in a very long time is Chris Hughton himself. Good lad. Keep it up.

  • Phil K

    Sep 24, 2010 at 1:14 PM

    Comment #4

    The stinking national football journos get erections at the prospect of disaster at SJP.
    They seem to forget that a certain other Frenchman had an even worse perutation before doing wonders at Leeds (Champions with him, also-rans without) and Man U (suddenly Champions WITH him, and the kick start to non-stop trophies) the rags desperately want him to do what they are supposing, and absolutely DREAD him being a success. And if he is – you watch. “Ben Arfa to join Man U” they’ll trumpet.
    You watch.

  • PK-Norway

    Sep 24, 2010 at 1:24 PM

    Comment #5
  • Klatoon

    Sep 24, 2010 at 1:28 PM

    Comment #6

    I just hope opposition players dont target him for “special” rough treatment,especially now that they kno how dangerous he can be with the ball at his feet. Hibbert,Heitinga and Arteta did seem intent on hacking him down last weekend.

  • G

    Sep 24, 2010 at 1:36 PM

    Comment #7

    Klatoon @ 6, that’s something I am also a little weary of. Stoke are a very physical side, and no doubt they will do thier very best to kick lumps out of HBA (and dareIsay Barton?) to provoke a reaction. I suspect they won’t be able to get near HBA though, as his dribbling skills seem sublime so far. I also expect Tiote to return the treatment in kind!

  • Thump

    Sep 24, 2010 at 1:46 PM

    Comment #8

    Stoke aren’t my worry – Sunderland are. Remember the tackle that effectively ended Shearer’s career?

  • Klatoon

    Sep 24, 2010 at 1:46 PM

    Comment #9

    just wish he and Raylor could be on the pitch at th same time because he WILL win lots of freekicks around the opposition pen area.And u kno those are “sitters” for Rayls

  • NUFC_Richyg01

    Sep 24, 2010 at 2:41 PM

    Comment #10

    Well Klatoon I would like to see this lineup on Sunday:

    ************** Krul

    Raylor *** Collo *** Willo *** Enrique

    ************** Tiote
    Jonas ******** Nolan ****** Ben Arfa

    ******** Strolla *** Carroll

    Soderburg, Sol, Perch, Rout, Barton, Ranger, McLoven

  • GeordieGerman

    Sep 24, 2010 at 3:43 PM

    Comment #11

    Hatem Ben Arfa, Hatem Ben Arfa, Hatem Ben Arfa… ! I am getting peed off with article after article about Ben Arfa. This has to be going to his head and maybe that of the other players. This is football and not tennis. It’s a squad, a team and not a single player. Not saying he’s a bad player. He’s not he’s excellent. But so much attention?

  • BeeGuy

    Sep 24, 2010 at 4:16 PM

    Comment #12

    HBA runs around like one atom in a vacuum. CH’s big job is to find the speed to complement that talent. HBA also seems to draw defenders like a magnet, so the rest of the team needs to know where to be once HBA is ready to turn the ball over to an undefended Magpie.

  • moonraker

    Sep 24, 2010 at 9:34 PM

    Comment #13


    Thanks for that footage; I new he was good but hadn’t seen anything other than his goal against Everton. He is a wonderful player!

    GeordieGerman: sorry to disagree but he could be a great addition to the team and the best players always get most attention mate! Unless you’re happy with mediocrity.

    Just give him the ball and let him play; from what I’ve seen we could build the team around him 🙂

    HWTL 🙂

  • baro

    Sep 25, 2010 at 1:34 AM

    Comment #14

    Hatem Ben Arfa is just absolutely awesome. He is quick, skillful, brilliant speed, and a excellent long range shot. We need to hurry up and sign him up, we better sign him permanently. Once he adapts to Premier League he will be a MONSTER!

  • Robby Bobson

    Sep 25, 2010 at 10:56 AM

    Comment #15

    It seemed like against everton we built our team around ben arfa so if we do im sure we will thrive.

    With the 3 deeper in midfield it allows him to use the left and cut inside allowing jose down the left.


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