Surprising and even disturbing news in the Daily Mail this morning.
The report is that Newcastle’s Hatem Arfa had to have a vital second operation on his left leg last November, that could well have saved his career, and the news seems to be true.
Ben Arfa, 23, had surgery immediately after he broke the left leg back on October 3rd last year in Manchester, but it seems that – unbeknownst to the public – complications set in after that – and those complications could have prevented his shin bones from healing completely.
Whether that would mean his career would have come to a premature end we really don’t know – but that’s what is being reported today in the Mail.
Paris St Germain club doctor Eric Rolland, who we reported yesterday was monitoring the Frenchman’s progress, operated on the play-maker at the French capital’s Pitie Salpetriere Hospital last November.
As we have heard in the last few days, Ben Arfa is now close to a return, and actually it seems he will be rejoining the Newcastle squad a week on Saturday.
Newcastle have signed the player earlier this month, with the fee said to be £5M from former club Marseilles.
Dr Rolland talked about his involvement:
“Ben Arfa’s advisers called on me to do the surgery,’ ‘He needed a second operation in mid November.”
‘He had a problem area which could have become infected, and prevented his broken bones from knitting together once more.”
‘It had to be sorted out urgently, and we thought it best to operate once more. Since then he has got away from the problem.”
‘The Clairefontaine rehabilitation center is now monitoring the 23 year-old very closely, and all this will not delay him from returning to playing football.”
“He got injured three and a half months ago, and his recovery is on schedule.”
That’s really almost astonishing news, but we are so pleased they fixed the problem, and seemingly also acted very quickly, once they realized what was happening.
One of Ben Arfa’s agents, Michel Ouazine was also quoted as saying:
“The main thing is for Hatem to be back playing by March.”
“He had an inflammation, and the second operation was justified.”
“‘Hatem is philosophical, and not impatient. He must not rush back.”
‘He has taken things well, as there is nothing he can do about the situation.”
This is really rather surprising news, but very good news nonetheless, in that they fixed the problem.
But to think that Ben Arfa’s career could have been ended by this injury, it’s sad to even think about it.
The young lad must have gone through some mental torment during all of this – although from what is being said above, he’s handled the situation very well, and has been very patient throughout.
When this lad gets back to playing at St. James’ Park again, that roar will have to be even louder now.