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

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Newcastle Mercurial Winger Could Be Big Trouble For England

9:06 am, Friday, June 8th, 2012 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 11 Comments

The Euro 2012 Championships get started tonight with joint host country Poland playing Greece in Group A.

Ben Arfa - in action for France against Iceland recently

Russia will play the Czech Republic in the other Group A game, and England’s first game is on Monday night against France, and that will be a tough first game in Group D, with the other teams Sweden and joint host country Ukraine also squaring off on Monday night.

Two players from Newcastle who should feature in that game on Monday night are Yohan Cabaye, who should start, and Ben Arfa who will probably come on in the second half as a substitute.

The big story about Hatem is that he used to be the bad boy of French football, with the emphasis on used to be, when he gave his managers and other players at his two previous french clubs, Lyon and Marseilles a tough time of it.

But since he arrived on Tyneside almost two years ago, he has calmed down and matured a lot, and it could be that being out of the game 10 months with a double fracture of his left leg, actually helped him along the road to maturity.

It’s strange how terrible events in your life often turn out for the good, but only after they have passed by.

Alan Pardew and the Newcastle coaches, and the fans too, have to take a large share of the credit for getting the mercurial Frenchman back on track, and he could well be a key player for the French team on Monday night.

Ben Arfa scored 6 goals for Newcastle last season, including two goals at St. James’ Park against Blackburn and Bolton, the likes of which have never been seen during the 120 years or so of St. James’ Park.

And the goal against Blackburn Rovers is considered the best individual goal ever seen at the famous Newcastle stadium.

Alan Pardew is delighted that Ben Arfa has made it back to International football:

“It’s brilliant and I’m absolutely delighted for Hatem,” “He is a very special talent, there is no doubt about it. He can do things on a pitch other players simply cannot do.”

“His talent is there for all to see. Hatem is capable of beating two or three men then scoring or providing the killer pass for a goal. Those types of players are very special.”

And Ben Arfa has come storming back to the International scene via some excellent performances for Newcastle this year, and in the first part of the season he couldn’t get a starting position in the team.

One of the things manager Pardew demanded was extra work from the Frenchman, and insisted that he tracked back to help out the side.

Ben Arfa started to do that this year, and the last five months of the season saw the 11 times capped winger in some vintage mercurial form.

Ben Arfa admits he has matured on Tyneside:

“I feel I’ve developed. On the pitch I am enjoying myself and in life I am really enjoying my family and friends. I live every moment to the full,” “I have grown up in my head so it has affected all aspects of my life.”

“I have evolved a lot.” “You realise the situation you were in previously was not working, you get smacked, so you start asking questions then start to realise it is not always the fault of others.”

“Sometimes I have said I can’t be bothered, but now I very quickly retract it as I realise I have got some responsibility.” “I have become less impatient, less impulsive, less driven by my own desires.”

It’s always nice to see a young man get both his life and career back on track, and Ben Arfa has certainly done that at Newcastle.

Ben Arfa has played 34 times for Newcastle with 7 goals and 7 assists, and we expect the lad to get even better in the seasons ahead, and he’s been a great buy at around £2M.

However, if he scores one of those goals against England, when he beats five or six players on a mazy run from the half way line,  some of us England and Newcastle supporters  will not know whether to laugh or cry. :D

Here’s Ben Arfa brilliant goal against Blackburn.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_XLmGf9vP8

And another one just as good it seems against Bolton Wanderers.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKSu_fTsoSM

You see what I mean.

Comments welcome.



Tags: Euro 2012 · Hatem Ben Arfa · International News · Newcastle News



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11 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Indian Magpie // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:12 AM

    I dont like england, or roy hodgson

  • 2 graham cwarr // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:12 AM

    Aussiedave from last post. I wouldn’t pay him more than 35k plus incentives.
    On topic. Will benny even start?

  • 3 ashwin say's // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:15 AM

    vaclar pilar -the chech messi hope we buy him
    http://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/en/vaclav-pilar/profil/spieler_63955.html

    thoughts?

  • 4 Paps // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:15 AM

    @cwarr
    doubt it but cabaye is starting. If he scores against us i dont know whether ill be happy or sad. This is the first tournament I’m not excited about mostly because roys shocking

  • 5 Indian Magpie // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:18 AM

    After refusing to sign a contract with Plze? in November 2011, Pila? was reported to have signed a contract with German side VfL Wolfsburg.[1] In January 2012 it was announced that Pila? would join Wolfburg in the summer but would be staying in the Czech Republic in the lead up to the UEFA Euro 2012 tournament

  • 6 GeordieToon89 // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:19 AM

    Actually Love Ben Arfa :) our lass is getting worried ha

  • 7 Indian Magpie // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:22 AM

    ESPN Soccernet ?@ESPNSoccernet
    Hatem Ben Arfa would only consider leaving Newcastle if he felt “100% confidence” from the coach of a “big club”. http://es.pn/LBqehc #nufc
    Expand
    Reply Retweet Favorite

  • 8 ashwin say's // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:26 AM

    pilar and benny along with cisse
    absolute
    thriller

  • 9 ilovetoon8788 // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:29 AM

    This is what Arfa has said recently. Article is below.

    It had been suggested that a good showing in Poland and Ukraine could see one of Europe’s top clubs come knocking for Ben Arfa’s services, but he says it would take an extremely convincing offer to tempt him away from St James’ Park.

    “If I do not have a really, really serious proposal, I’ll stay,” Ben Arfa told L’Equipe. “If a big club comes, but does not propose something interesting – that is to say, the coach really wants me – I’ll stay.

    “If I do not feel the confidence of the [interested club’s] coach 100%, I will not leave. I still have three-year contract. But I know it can go fast.”
    —————

    Worrying if true. If he thinks the club coming after him is serious and is 100%, he will go.

  • 10 Indian Magpie // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:29 AM

    Ashwin,

    Please read comment # 5 &7

  • 11 Rotonda heights // Jun 8, 2012 at 9:54 AM

    Ben Arfa was nearly 7M in total wasn’t he or at least 5M? still a bargain




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