There is some good news this morning in the the local Newcastle Journal, which is again reporting that Alan Pardew is set to make 23 year old Frenchman, Hatem Ben Arfa, his first signing.
Ben Arfa – soon to be a Newcastle player?
The initial plan was for Ben Arfa to be on loan for the season, and then Newcastle would make a decision during the summer on whether to sign him permanently.
But it seems that Newcastle have already seen enough of the lad in the four appearances he has made for the first team, and in training, for them to be convinced they should be signing him, and in January too.
And one thing that has impressed us with Alan Pardew is that he doesn’t let the grass grow under his feet, and he has already tied up Steven Taylor to a five year deal, wants to get Ben Arfa on a permanent deal next month, and then we think he will be pushing the club to sign Joey Barton and Jose Enrique on long term deals, as their contracts have a short 18 months to run.
That’s good thinking by Alan, to tie up the good players who will be making up the core of the team you hope to build over the next year or two.
The Journal are saying the fee is a low £3.5M they have already agreed to pay Marseilles if the lad played 25 games this season, but he’s not going to do that now, and we suppose the loan fee was around £1.5M to £2M so is we are getting this player for around £5M in totoal?
That’s a fantastic deal, and of course the skills and creativity of Ben Arfa are exactly what was missing from the side against Tottenham, because in games like that class can turn a game, and it did on Tuesday – but for Tottenham.
Liverpool have also expressed some interest in the player, but from what we have seen from the youngster, who was at the Man City game last Sunday, he only wants to sign for Newcastle, which is refreshing to say the least.
There’s not too much new news today about Ben Arfa that we didn’t already know, except the fee seems to be small, but that’s some good negotiating again by the club.
But there was news in France yesterday that Newcastle are near to signing the French International on a permanent deal.
And Ben Arfa seems to have recovered remarkably well from his double broken leg, and has been rehabilitating in the South of France, and could return to training at Newcastle in as a little as five weeks time.
There’s nothing we would like more than for Newcastle to announce they will sign Ben Arfa permanently in January – and the sooner he signs along the dotted line – the better.
It would be one terrific signing by the club.