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News and Commentary On Newcastle United By Ed Harrison, A Proud Exiled Geordie And Lifelong Fan

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Howay The Lads!!

Ben Arfa Is So Very Good For The Game Of Football

1:09 pm, Friday, January 27th, 2012 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 40 Comments

There’s no doubt that Hatem  Ben Arfa is one of the most exiting players that Newcastle have on Tyneside at the moment.

A trivia question in the years ahead – what has Ben Arfa just achieved?

As we all know the Frenchman has had a tough time of things since he arrived in August of 2010, and he was out almost a year with that terrible doubel fracture of his left leg that he picked up at Manchester City on 3rd October in 2010.

And this season he’s taken some time to get back to his best, which is understandable, but he has scored three great goals in the last five weeks, one of which against  Blackburn was probably the best goal ever seen at St. James’ Park.

So the 8 times capped Frenchman is already leaving some memories for the Newcastle fans, and it seems the lad cans core from almost any position, and he’s a real sight to behold when he’s running with that ball.

Alan Pardew is obviously trying to make him an even better player as he works to fit the French wizard into the Newcastle team, and Alan had this to say today about the 24 year-old:

“Hatem has been sick actually. But he’s trained now, and he’s fit.” “He’s an exciting player that is getting to grips with what we’re about.”

“He’s focused on his positional play and he is getting a lot better.” “The one thing that you can’t underestimate is he’ll get you off your seat.”

“He’ll do things that are fantastic. Even a hardened manager like myself gets satisfaction from that.” “I love to see him running with the ball and taking people on.”

“He knows the Premier League is about energy and he needs to put that on the pitch for 90 minutes. He’s getting better.”

That’s good to know Ben Arfa is okay again, and he didn’t travel to  Tenerife with the rest of the lads, and now we know why.

Ben Arfa can be a big player for Newcastle tomorrow afternoon,. as we expect him to start out on the right wing at the Amex Stadium.

And to quote Bon Jovi,  maybe the lad will make a memory for us (again) tomorrow afternoon at Brighton.

Ben Arfa is the type of player fans love to watch, because he is an entertainer with mercurial skills,  and he is so very good for the game.

For the record,  the lad has 19 appearances for Newcastle with four great goals and 3 assists – so far.

Howay The Lads!!

Tags: FA Cup · Hatem Ben Arfa · Newcastle News

40 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Beattie25 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:10 PM


    3rd bid for Mariappa

    Looks like we want him desperatley.

    Ok then if we have bid for him 3 times it really can’t be a desperation thing can it?

  • 2 JackButler // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:14 PM

    With Cabaye, Tiote, HBA, Guthrie, Vukic, Ba and now Cisse we have no need to play long ball, we have players who can pass for fun

  • 3 bambams // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:14 PM

    In Ben Arfa we trust

  • 4 Beattie25 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:14 PM

    I suposse the real question is… Who will win the Royal Rumble

  • 5 bambams // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:20 PM

    I know we are after the Mariappa lad, i hope he is as good as a few bloggers have stated- just wonder exactly how many “players” we now need to become a top 5 side?

    I hope we are not missing out on how well we have done so far, my only worry is all our good work could become undone with a ‘not so good second half of the season’ then players become unhappy at lack of progress.

    Before i get shouted at i am not asking for us to go and spend millions and millions on Harrod signings, just wonder if one or two slightly better players coming in now might make a bigger difference than maybe waiting until the summer ? You do not move up the table during the close season !

  • 6 IPToon // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:21 PM

    I would like Mariappa – good player and fairly cheap

    Better than Williamson in alot of departments, not in the air though.

    My team for Brighton (if all of these are available that is)

    —————————- Elliot ————————-
    Santon —- Williamson — Coloccini — Ferguson
    Ben Arfa —- Guthrie —- Cabaye —- Gutierrez
    —————– Obertan — Best ———————

    Brighton will be alright up against 2 big men up front (ameobi and best) so lets add some pace up their in Obertan and at the same time hopefully getting his confidence up against a weaker team.

  • 7 Beattie25 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:21 PM


    Nail on the head my friend

    Nail on the head

  • 8 davybtoon // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:23 PM

    Well if he plays tonight we get to see what mariappa Is like n if he don’t means we’re getting him

  • 9 normag // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:24 PM

    Who’s the guy with number 45 in the pictures from Brighton?,,10278~2590572,00.html

    Is it Paul Dummet or what?:)

  • 10 ash1001 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:26 PM

    I am not trying to pre judge a situation, but according to AP Benny was not in Tenerife with the rest of the squad as he was allowed to go home to France because he was ill.
    Whats going on here, he played at Fulham, the squad then flew from London to Tenerife, (no benny cos hes off to god knows where cos he was ill) – seems rather strange, but he was back training yesterday.
    Please AP tell it like it really is, was it not just a case of Benny wanted to visit his folks, rather than go on the team bonding jaunt.

  • 11 -Tendo- // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:28 PM

    ash1001 – he was a guest for the French FA Cup draw or something along those lines

  • 12 Beattie25 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:28 PM

    If we had signed Cisse and he went straight into the team the momentum may have carried us through the Fulham match. But it has been a bit of a false start knowing that we wont be able to see him for a few games.

    If we get Samba (or someone smilar) shirt sales will go through the roof and i for one will be dressed like a Brazilian in the rio carnival to do the Samba.

  • 13 LGFUAD21 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:29 PM


    My Obertan idea seems to have taken off on here.

    We need Benny on the wings. But imagine Obertan scoring. his confidence will rocket. Im sure its not great atm with him being benched.

  • 14 GeordieGesus // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:30 PM

    normag, Dummet plays with No. 45. So… 1+1=2

  • 15 london_mag // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:30 PM

    So very good for the game of football….? is that proper english?

  • 16 JackButler // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:31 PM

    ash1001 – Stop looking for conspiracy’s with HBA, the lad was ill, and anyway, he was supposed to be in Paris to make the cup draw while the players were away in Spain, Don’t know if he make the draw or not though

  • 17 davybtoon // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:31 PM

    Agree obertan wud b much better As a striker n leave benny on the wing

  • 18 ash1001 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:33 PM

    Forgot about that, but yeh I saw that as well, he was on French TV commenting on the cup and life at Newcastle, so why was AP saying he was ill,

  • 19 Beattie25 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:34 PM

    Obertan… the new Henry?

    It could work!!!!

  • 20 LGFUAD21 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:34 PM

    Also just found this video. I know what we all say about youtube.

    But if only Obertan showed this confidence here. I know its a different kind of opposition. Still look how fast he is. If he could develop a decent shot he could be better than Walcott

  • 21 bambams // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:35 PM

    Maybe he has not had time to change Doctors yet, had to pop back to France………..

  • 22 nightfa11 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:35 PM

    i think its time we rest colo, jonas & cabaye!

    they played every match & gave their maximum. giving colo a free weekend will be tough cos we dont have a CB..but if he has a knock..i wouldnt risk way…not for the FA..cos luck plays to big of a role in cup competitions.

    & cabaye..that derry challenge wasnt innocent..& u could see that against fulham.. id give him a weekend off…especailly cos we have EPL on wednesday..

    winning FA would be nice, but we have a way better chance to finish 6th then winning a cup > europe.

  • 23 Beattie25 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:35 PM

    Not every person is ill due to a stomach bug or a virus that keeps you in bed for a week!

  • 24 bambams // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:37 PM

    If we want Europe, this is as good a chance as finishing in top 6.

    Just look at Cardif, Finalists for a cup

  • 25 Beattie25 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:37 PM

    I really honestly think, and I have said this for ages, that Obertan will be quality!!!

    Confiedence is all he needs. C’mon Obertan or as they say in France ‘J’em apelle’

  • 26 kimik123 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:39 PM

    hi, first post here, i met up with a close friend of mine earlier (cant go into to many details) who works on the staff when newcastle do there player medicals ect and last week when demba cisse was doing his med there was also a young approx 17year old defender belguim he thinks waiting with mother and agent for his medical aswell, has anyone heard anything?

  • 27 ash1001 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:41 PM

    For me Benny is just about the best thing since sliced bread, was brought up on Jinky Jim Smith, Tony Green, Pedro, so hes first on the team sheet, with one reservation, do not give him the ball in our half of the field unless there is a rule that he must pass it to a team mate, and not try to beat the world from there.
    In the oppositions halve he can run riot, so give him his head and let him read the game as he sees it.

  • 28 nightfa11 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:41 PM


    yeah but when it comes to cups it takes only one slip up and youre weird red card & even weirder “penalty”.. i wouldnt risk way.. to finish 6th you need quality, but to win a cup you need luck…lots of it!

  • 29 mattyNUFC // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:44 PM

    so very tired of these pardew interviews about ben arfa.

    i know people wont agree but ben arfa is one of those enigmatic players; a messi, a tevez, a CR,

    you play around them, not the other way around. I know it may not SEEM cohesive to how a team is supposed to work, but, a good manager will find the balance. Pardew seems like he can’t quite figure it out

  • 30 toonashwin // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:45 PM

    apart from topic what a semi of australian open
    joko- 2 5 40
    mury-2 5 40
    duece for 3rd time bfore result
    loved it

  • 31 Irie-Magpie // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:49 PM

    This shouldn’t come as a surprise we all knew he was going to stamp his mark, Just need for him to be a regular starter and perform consistently..

    Adrian Mariappa saga is dragging, and we all know what happens when a transfer drag, Watford playing hard ball because they’ve sussed how we do business, but it’s their loss, this guy was only good for them to give him a biyearly contract but due to NUFC being interested and also seeing what has become of Willo they are trying to force a bidding war (if Swansea & Bolton are interested), am i ranting sorry but this should’ve being done and dusted within 2 days of us lodging our bid if not second bid.

  • 32 Level 7 Hero // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:56 PM

    Rest players? They’ve played there league games and 4 cup games in total so far! It’s not as though we’ve had Dynamo Kiev away on thursday night and got Brighton away on saturday… They’ve been in Tenerife all week relaxing with the odd training session. Full strength team tomorrow, which i think Pardew will go for. As for Obertan upfront, thats a big NO for me.

  • 33 Shearer.Milburn // Jan 27, 2012 at 2:04 PM

    It doesn’t say that be my was ill whilst the team was away… Are people just putting words in AP’s mouth ? The way I read it was that he had been ill and now he’s getting better and up to pace…

  • 34 Shearer.Milburn // Jan 27, 2012 at 2:08 PM

    Actually, after reading the article again, it starts with “Hatem has been sick actually. But he’s trained now, and he’s fit.” “He’s an exciting player that is getting to grips with what we’re about.” it doesn’t mention or even insinuate when he was sick… Maybe his sickness was the reason he had only been starting from the bench…..

  • 35 joppadoni // Jan 27, 2012 at 3:31 PM

    think kimik needs to learn english

    on another note, B mimer

  • 36 max // Jan 27, 2012 at 3:53 PM

    very important to us

  • 37 billy // Jan 27, 2012 at 4:05 PM

    These mid-season breaks are notorious for bad results on returning pardew should have had them training at the freezing cold Benton after the Fulham debacle!

  • 38 bills-son // Jan 27, 2012 at 6:34 PM

    ash1001 // Jan 27, 2012 at 1:33 PM
    Forgot about that, but yeh I saw that as well, he was on French TV commenting on the cup and life at Newcastle, so why was AP saying he was ill,

    Perhaps because he WAS ill.

    Had you thought of that?

  • 39 Jonny // Jan 27, 2012 at 7:18 PM

    How can you just continuously pick one player out from the team and say that he needs more energy for the 90 minutes when we have players like Ameobi and Best?

  • 40 Brutooon // Jan 27, 2012 at 10:51 PM

    Jonny // Jan 27, 2012 at 7:18 PM

    How can you just continuously pick one player out from the team and say that he needs more energy for the 90 minutes when we have players like Ameobi and Best?

    Totally agreed. Ameobi been shit and not doing much for his entire career. the way i look it is kinda BIAS.

    -a french winger who score a brilliant individual goal in the cup and did ONE mistake and the “fans” said drop him etc

    – a home born striker who ONLY score one goal this season and keep slipping and keep shit-ing but the “fans” still said he is a legend

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