Ben Arfa Becoming Newcastle’s Secret Weapon


There were some good things that came out of the game on Saturday at Fulham.

Ben Arfa – becoming Newcastle’s secret weapon

One of them was how very well the lads played in that first half, and of the seven goals scored,  Newcastle produced the best two individual goals from Danny Guthrie and Ben Arfa.

Danny got his second goal of the season and his 9th overall for Newcastle, and it was another beauty following his goal in the dying minutes of normal time in the Carling Cup tie at Blackburn Rovers in October, when he scored a similar goal  in the second minute of injury time to make it 2-1.

And then Cabaye scored that great goal three minutes later to take the game into extra time.

And Ben Arfa produced another excellent individual goal out of nothing after 85 minutes, as he beat (only) a couple of players (this time),  before smashing the ball into the back of the net – that left foot of his is like magic.

That’s the 3rd goal that the Frenchman has scored in his last 5 appearances for the Magpies, and he now has 4 goals and 3 assists  for Newcastle in his 19 appearances for the club – and that’s not too bad at all.

Alan Pardew was happy with Ben Arfa on Saturday, and the lad seems to be listening to what his manager is asking him to do on the pitch:

“Ben Arfa was good. He does give the ball away occasionally in difficult situations, but he creates so much.”

“He’s actually more of a positive than a negative – he wasn’t a problem.” “Those type of players weren’t a problem – it was our defending.”

Ben Arfa is getting close to nailing down the right wing spot at Newcastle, which fits his game perfectly.

Ben Arfa will have the freedom to come inside, but he’s producing a good return for the team in terms of goals and assists (and entertainment), and he’s proved he can get past defenders with his exquisite skill.

He’s becoming Newcastle’s secret weapon because whenever he gets the ball, anywhere on the pitch, he can go on and score a goal.

When he goes towards goal, if the defenders come towards him he can go past them, and if they hold off  on him, he’s shown he can rocket the ball into the back of the net. Who would be a defender against this lad?

And the 8 times capped French International (with 2 great goals) deserves great personal credit.

That’s not only because of the way he recovered in the year he was out of the game with his broken leg, but also because he hasn’t caused any fuss at all, as Alan Pardew has left him out of the starting line up this season.

This lad could still become a super-star for Newcastle United.

Comments welcome.



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178 comments so far

  • catchy in norway

    Jan 24, 2012 at 1:27 PM

    Comment #1

    MOST OF US NO THIS

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  • Shorzy

    Jan 24, 2012 at 1:30 PM

    Comment #2

    Off the subject a bit here. Anyone got a link for the game on Sat?? Can never seem to find a one when it’s the FA Cup games.

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  • catchy in norway

    Jan 24, 2012 at 1:33 PM

    Comment #3

    IF WE ARE ON, ITS NORMALLY ON FIRSTROW

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  • Team0Asprilla

    Jan 24, 2012 at 1:35 PM

    Comment #4

    ESPN 17:15 Sat.

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  • MidlandMag85

    Jan 24, 2012 at 1:37 PM

    Comment #5

    Hi All,

    First time commenting on this blog, been following it for a while and thought i’d get involved with the banter.

    So on subject, Ben arfa, we always knew he was going to star for us, and i’m happy to see him starting a few games now, i think it maybe worked out well BA leaving for the ACN so ben arfa could have a share of the limelight, i just hope that when the 3 boys come back we are able to accomodate them ALL into the starting 11 along with ben arfa, and guti.

    like i said 1st time commenting, so be gentle 🙂

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  • -Tendo-

    Jan 24, 2012 at 1:50 PM

    Comment #6

    i dont think first row shows the FA cup games, i couldnt find the Newcastle vs Blackburn game on there the other week

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  • ToonDownSouth

    Jan 24, 2012 at 1:52 PM

    Comment #8

    Tendo

    That’s because it wasn’t on tv, anywhere

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  • kaddi

    Jan 24, 2012 at 1:53 PM

    Comment #9

    He looses lot of balls. Need to improve on tat. But last match i don blame him our strikers were horrible didnt help him out.

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  • JackButler

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:00 PM

    Comment #10

    Can’t wait to see Benny and Cabaye playing with Cisse and Ba, what a mouth watering prospect we have in waiting

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  • nightfa11

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:04 PM

    Comment #11

    im not impressed with HBA.. sorry…everyone was saying that he was our best man on the pitch against fulham, but i think he was very poor..

    he gave away the ball about 20 times.. & why did he give it away? cos he was ALWAYS trying to beat 3 fulham defenders..ALWAYS.. i like solo actions, but not every time he gets the ball.. theres nothing wrong with passing it back.. like i said..he should try to exploit his attributes, but not in every single attack!

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  • GeordieGesus

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:10 PM

    Comment #12

    nightfa11, I’d duck if I was you.

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  • nightfa11

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    Comment #13

    GeordieGesus

    ure not me

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  • kaddi

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    Comment #14

    Nightfa11. Even i have my doubts about him. But cant blame benny if no one helped him. He is too good for shola n best. You will the best of him once demba cisse play wit him

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  • -Tendo-

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:19 PM

    Comment #15

    ah that makes sense! they had a camera there for ITV’s awesome 20 second highlights though!

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  • gorgonzola

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:25 PM

    Comment #16

    Jesus not impressed then…. I suppose you are about to murder Ameobi if you are not impressed with HBA? Jesus….who are these people….

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  • ToonDownSouth

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:28 PM

    Comment #17

    People are allowed to have opinions…

    Just like Pardew is allowed to have his. And I’m sure he’s doing a better job as Newcastle United manager than anyone on here would.

    Why does everyone think they can do better than the manager? Such an awful trait in 99% of football fans.

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  • Rosted Pork

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:31 PM

    Comment #18

    im impressd wit hba 😉 everytime he runs foward impresses me n his skills r magic

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  • Crow59Cdo

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:31 PM

    Comment #19

    just come in and seen on SSN that Wigan are in discusions with Maynard, come on AP think fast, Cisse,Maynard and a quality centre half = sensational window imo

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  • t00ntime

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:34 PM

    Comment #20

    HBA lost the ball alot against fulham that is true, but lots of the time he did actually pass it back so saying he always tried to dribble is a lie.
    Ben arfa lost the ball alot in the second half because when we gave him the ball he dribbled it got to the point of passing, looked up and saw best and shola standing at the halfway line. Shola was obviously out of breath lol (shud be an impact sub) . But Best just lost intrest after 2-1.

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  • ToonDownSouth

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:36 PM

    Comment #21

    Crow

    But why would Maynard want to come here to be 3rd/4th choice? He won’t get a game in front of Cisse & Ba, and maybe even Best.

    I think it just shows how far we’ve come in the last 18 months – Maynard would have been our 2nd best striker when we got promoted!

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:37 PM

    Comment #22

    Nightfall,
    If I wasnt you I would duck.

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  • -Tendo-

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:40 PM

    Comment #23

    just ignore him everyone

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  • Hatem

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:41 PM

    Comment #24

    Everyday I read through the articles on here, theres always one about me!

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  • LewSpi

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:42 PM

    Comment #25

    Tendo & Shorzy

    I always check nufc.com (the unofficial one). On their Match Preview article at the bottom they always say which tv channels the game is on, including the foreign ones.

    If it’s on any at all, 99% of the time, there will be a stream on http://www.vipbox.tv

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  • ash-out

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:43 PM

    Comment #26

    Gorgonzola – everyone is allowed an opinion here. Yours is no better than anyone else. Your ‘who are these people’ makes you sound like Victor Meldrew.
    HBA is hugely talented but can also become to embroiled with taking on opponents which makes his play easy to read and also to stop. His first half performance in the cup against Blackburn was one of the cackest I have ever seen.

    In regards to murdering Shola – yau may have come with something there (but not until after the mackem game).

    @ plan B – you are either a mackem or a total bellend (yes I know the two are 99% one and the same).

    You slag Pardew as a chancer due to a poor 45 minutes. What were you saying about him after the man u game? I have said it once today and I will say it again. Get a grip and get some perspective ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

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  • metaloverlord

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:46 PM

    Comment #27

    Ben Arfa reminds me a little bit of Wor Pedro. In the way that he can see a pass that other people can’t. Hopefully Demba and Dave will be able to read those passes as if they can all get on the same wavelength then we could be in for some fireworks.

    We will have a very good attacking unit then. Cabaye will put a 40 yard ball on a plate for whoever wants it. Ben Arfa can thread the killer through ball, Cisse is apparently quicker than Roadrunner so he will be on the end of those Ben Arfa dinks. After that we’ll have old syrup knees taking the mick from 30 yards onwards.

    We have always enjoyed attacking football, so let’s sit back and allow Ben Arfa and co. to do their stuff and hopefully take teams apart. I really think that what we saw HBA do against Everton, b/burn and fulham he could do against any team in the league.
    Apart from the odd blip which every team has, I think Pardew is slowly building a team which opponents will fear as Slim Fast doesn’t sell anyone to the first bidder.

    Howay The Lads!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • Crow59Cdo

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:46 PM

    Comment #28

    fair point but again imo spiderman isnt good enough offensively although offers defensive cover for the lb his end product is pants, was thinking playing him left wing or even wide right as ober clearly isnt capable and HBA i think will eventually take up his no10 role, although perhaps he wouldnt become an immediate starter i think he offers pace and something slighty different and has amazing talent, plus lover will go in the summer leaving best and shola as forward cover and as proved already thats knowhere near good enough for a top 6 team let alone playing in europe on top, if anything it at least adds depth.
    Also i posted the other day about my opinion on a good centre half, Matt Mills of Leiscester, anyone watching the game yesterday will see he good in the air. quick, young, read the game well and more importantly hes the captain at the age of 25 which shows hes obviously a well grouded character, Sven GE was with him at man city and signed him at leicester so theres obvious promise

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  • STB

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:48 PM

    Comment #29

    Make the most of watching HBA in b & w stripes as given the interview he gave to goal.com about PSG & Tevez not wanting to go there (his home club), that sounded very like a come and get me message to the Qatari owners.
    He knows he could get better wages, CL football next year, more visibility in France to get back into the national team and live in Paris, which of course is the 2nd best city in the world (after the Toon ).
    So savour it while he’s there. Money is no object to PSG so a good 2nd half of the season could guarantee Mikey a 10 to 15m profit…

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  • planb

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:49 PM

    Comment #30

    ash-out your a Sack whos to thick to be a Mackem what were you blurting on about Pardew did you sleep through the Norwich and West brom games they were hidings to you mug!

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  • davybtoon

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:49 PM

    Comment #31

    any news on a defender heard watford want 4/5mill that mariappa cant see us paying that for him when we could get a top class player from europe for about 5/6mill ie douglas who only has 6month left on his contract

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:49 PM

    Comment #32

    Its a tricky one the HBA enigma,you cant afford not to have him in the team when he’s capabable of some of the magic moments we’ve seen him pull off,the trouble is when he’s not doing something special,a lot of the time he can look very average,I for one would love for us to be able to accommodate him in the team,but personally I think we need better players in the team to get the best out of him.

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  • LewSpi

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:51 PM

    Comment #33

    Will Morgan @GuardianWMorgan Reply Retweet Favorite · Open
    According to my sources several English clubs may be in for Shaqiri #AFC #MUFC #MCFC #THFC #NUFC

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  • -Tendo-

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:52 PM

    Comment #34

    LewSpi – nice one man, i’ll do that in future, think i spent the first half looking for a link last time!

    ash-out – don’t even respond to him and maybe…jsut maybe, he’ll go away

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  • davybtoon

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:53 PM

    Comment #35

    hba is our best player no doubt n has thnbe potential to b best in the league hes that good
    ppl need to stop reading into players interviews about were there goin so what him n ba said they wud like to play for psg its there boyhood club if i was player n got asked about newcastle ya damm ryt i wud be saying i wanna play for them if i got the chance dosent mean the club wud want me or them

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  • nden85

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:55 PM

    Comment #36

    the reason HBA had to constantly try and beat about 8 players is because there was nothing happening infront of him. when ba and cisse are there making runs and putting effort in HBA will have a wealth of options, unitl then he has to try and do it by himself because strolla and best can’t be bothered and have no ability

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  • Hatem

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:55 PM

    Comment #37

    STB, he doesnt want to leave. He’s happy here, he said something and the lazy interviewer translated it to say ‘COME AND GET ME’. He loves the club as the fans helped him through his horrific leg-break, and didnt forget about him. Why do you think he keeps thanking them?

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  • davybtoon

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:55 PM

    Comment #38

    team id like to see v brighton

    krul
    tavernier willo colo santon
    hba gthrie abeid obertan
    vukic best

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  • JackButler

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:56 PM

    Comment #39

    planb – Why do you support this club?
    Everything you say is negative and all you do is criticise and slag everyone and everything off.

    You must be the most miserable person I’ve ever come across

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  • davybtoon

    Jan 24, 2012 at 2:57 PM

    Comment #40

    jb or a mackem

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