Ben Arfa made only four appearances with one very special goal last season for Newcastle, but he did enough to convince Newcastle fans he was a special talent indeed.
Ben Arfa scoring that wonderful goal against Everton last September
That goal was the winner and only goal at Everton, when he got the ball 30 yards out, moved to his left a couple of steps and then thundered in an amazing shot that gave Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard no chance at all – a fabulous goal from the French youngster.
And today the Newcastle manager has come out and said the 24 year-old is indeed a special talent.
Alan Pardew is hoping that the French International, who suffered a double leg break last season at Eastlands, , will have a massive influence at St James’ Park and will play the role of second striker.
That was the role that Kevin Nolan played for the last two seasons and scored 30 goals in the process, and that may suggest why Newcastle were unwilling to give Kevin a new five year contract, and why he decided to leave for second division West Ham United.
Newcastle took a big chance on the Frenchman when they pushed through the £5M transfer Ben Arfa from Marseilles in January, despite his serious injury.
Pardew sensibly held Ben Arfa back at the end of last season, and never played him, even though the youngster was keen to show the appreciative Newcastle fans he was back to his best.
This is what Alan Pardew said last night:
“But for the injury and a bit of growing up he could be a massive force in the game.”
“We have him back and in full training and that makes us stronger.”
“Gerard Houllier asked me how he was doing and he said he was a special, special talent.”
Newcastle have signed four new players this summer already, but we forget that we also have Dan Gosling and Ben Arfa, who made just 5 appearances between them last season – so in reality it’s six new players Newcastle have all ready to go for next season.
That cannot be too bad.
Howay The Lads!!