Ben Arfa May Miss Out Again On European Championships

Hatem  Ben Arfa did not make the French squad for the European Championships held in Switzerland and Austria in June of 2008.

Ben Arfa in action for France

In 2008, while he was at Lyon, Ben Arfa was one of the players omitted from the final squad in the final cut made by then French manager Raymond Domenech, and Ben Arfa was really cut up about it.

The French International is now a much more mature young man, but that doesn’t stop him from dreading it may happen again, when Laurent Blanc names his final squad of 23 tomorrow night.

France will play Iceland in a friendly tomorrow, and Ben Arfa is expected to play to show Laurent what he can do, after completing a very good season with Newcastle United, during which he scored six goals, all of which seemed special.

Ben Arfa spoke to the local Newcastle press today:

“I have knots in my stomach. I was shocked in 2008 and it probably took me a whole season to get over it.”

“But this is football. I will respect the coach’s decision even if it does not go my way. I don’t know what will happen. All I can do is try my best and hope the coach takes me to the championships.”

“I am 25 now and I am far more mature as a person and as a player compared to four years ago.”

Yohan Cabaye is also in the provisional squad, but the 10 times capped French International central midfielder is almost a cast-iron  certainty to be in the squad, and very likely to start in the first game against England on June 11th, which is two weeks come Monday.

The French manager is not particularly looking forward to telling the four players who will not make the final squad of 23 that they haven’t made it:

“I wish I could take everyone. Nobody from my original 35 deserves to miss out.” “I remember 1998 when some good friends were left out of the World Cup in our own country it was awful. It affected all of us.”

“But this is part of being a coach and I will gently let down the players who have not made the squad. I will be honest with them, but they will still not be happy about it.”

Marseilles Loic Remy missed the last four weeks of the season with a thigh strain, and Laurent may not risk him, and that could make the case to include Ben Arfa, but Laurent knows all about the magic Ben Arfa has performed for the Magpies this year.

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew made sure of that.

We really hope both Ben Arfa and Yohan Cabaye make the final French squad of 23 – fingers crossed – and we’ll know soon enough.

Comments welcome.

18 comments so far

  • Lee Dodd

    May 26, 2012 at 1:51 PM

    Comment #1

    He has To Go – Who Has Played Better Than HBA This Season ??? Scored Better Goals ??? NO ONE ..

  • saxonfenken

    May 26, 2012 at 1:52 PM

    Comment #2

    They will be daft if they do not take him, even to come on for twenty misns when teams are tiring, especially if it is hot.
    Hatem could cause all sorts of problems

  • tomtoon7

    May 26, 2012 at 1:53 PM

    Comment #3

    Shame you’re not Anglaise Monsieur Arfa,lol


    May 26, 2012 at 1:55 PM

    Comment #4

    England 4 France 3 Ben arfa brace and Cabaye screamer 🙂

  • Lee Dodd

    May 26, 2012 at 1:55 PM

    Comment #5

    Don’t Count Him Out From Scoring Against England Either !!!!

  • Doocey

    May 26, 2012 at 2:00 PM

    Comment #6

    Almost 100% certain Hatem will be going to the Euro;s.
    Remy has been ruled out of the championship now, so it’s a no brainer for Blanc.

  • alkinou

    May 26, 2012 at 2:01 PM

    Comment #7

    Loic Remy has been definately ruled out so it’s almost a certainty for Ben Arfa now (and even if Remy had been fit I still think it’s Valbuena who would have been left out)

  • renzo

    May 26, 2012 at 2:02 PM

    Comment #8

    it’s not all bad if they are not chosen – they would have a proper rest and a full pre-season with us! whatever happens hopefully they come back to us fit and unhurt


    May 26, 2012 at 2:05 PM

    Comment #9

    If Blanc doesn’t pick Ben Arfa then Newcastle will feel a bit more asured that Ben Arfa will be rearing to go next season, however europe will miss out on one of the most gifted footballers in world showing his almost unparalled skills. Good luck Hatem but i don’t think you need it son.

  • graham cwarr

    May 26, 2012 at 2:06 PM

    Comment #10

    What prices can you get for France to reach the semis, reach the final or win?


    May 26, 2012 at 2:07 PM

    Comment #11

    i dont think England can handle Ben Arfa to be brutaly honest.

  • graham cwarr

    May 26, 2012 at 2:11 PM

    Comment #12

    @leroi not many defences can contain him. Combine him with a top fullback to overlap with and a top striker or two and any defence is in real trouble


    May 26, 2012 at 2:22 PM

    Comment #13

    @ cwarr
    france 10/1 to win tournament and 15/8 to reach the semis.

  • mindshaft

    May 26, 2012 at 2:46 PM

    Comment #14

    well if HBA and Cabaye make the England game, I’ll def be supporting France

  • graham cwarr

    May 26, 2012 at 2:59 PM

    Comment #15

    When it comes to England id support the team if there was any forethought tote Team. The selected squad for this tournament should be all young guns perhaps captained by gerrard or Rio.
    A team unlikely to win this tournament. But will be more experienced together and a more capable team to attempt a good world cup run.
    Half the names in this squad are past their best or totally unworthy. (what’s glen Johnson done in the last 3 years?)


    May 26, 2012 at 5:21 PM

    Comment #16

    Ben Arfa magician, Englands only chance if he is not picked.

  • obatoyou

    May 26, 2012 at 5:58 PM

    Comment #17

    Heh DG Magpie @ 4

    England 4 -3 Ben Arfa Brace, Cabaye screamer

    John Terry header and a Johnny Wilkinson field goal!


    May 26, 2012 at 7:37 PM

    Comment #18

    Just watching Nederland-Bulgaria Live on Tele with Krul in Goal !


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