Ben Arfa is back fully fit again according to manager Alan Pardew, and he looked good in the second half for Newcastle in their 1-0 home win over Wigan yesterday.
Ben Arfa – can do things other players can’t
At the moment Newcastle are joint 3rd in the Premier League with Chelsea on 19 points from their 9 games, and are 4 points above Liverpool in 5th place.
Ben Arfa is likely to start the game at Blackburn Rovers in the 4th round of the Carling Cup on Wednesday evening, as a second striker, which he played in the second half yesterday, in a slightly withdrawn role.
Ben Arfa came on for Leon Best and he changed the look of the Newcastle side in the second half, and the lads played much better than in the first half, when they looked a little lackadaisical.
Ben Arfa looked in good form and after the game Alan Pardew again said he expected Ben Arfa to become a big player for Newcastle, and he also the Newcastle manager had this to say about the 6 times capped French International:
“Hatem can do things other players can’t – but he’s not going to be calm, come in normal time, work and go home. He’s not that type of character.”
“We’ve managed him OK so far. Whether that continues I don’t know but up until now he’s been great. He’s in great shape and looking to play again.”
We have every confidence that Alan Pardew will be able to handle the mercurial Frenchman at Newcastle, who has a reputation for being difficult to handle at his two previous clubs, Lyon and Marseilles.
But as Alan says, he’s been fine so far at Newcastle, and we expect the 24 year-old to begin to get a lot more playing time in the Newcastle first team, starting on Wednesday night, with potentially a full 90 minutes at Blackburn.
Certainly Newcastle looked a more creative side with Ben Arfa playing in it, and the lad almost scored just before the great winner by Yohan Cabaye, his first goal for the Newcastle club.
Certainly Newcastle fans seem to be looking forward to seeing the Frenchman start more games, and maybe if he can hit top form ina few weeks, who knows, he may be able to keep Newcastle high up in that league table.
But first things first, and the next game is on Wednesday at Blackburn, where a win will take Newcastle into the quarter finals of the Carling Cup.
Howay The Lads!!