Ben Arfa Was The Bright Spark – Another Tremendous Buy

It was surprising that Ben Arfa even played on Saturday, since Alan Pardew had said he was injured – it was a white lie which is defined as an often trivial, diplomatic or well-intentioned untruth.But a sold out full house of over 52,300 fans at St. James’ Park on Saturday were treated to a sublime performance of skill from Hatem Ben Arfa, and if this lad can keep playing like this, then Newcastle will do extremely well in the upcoming season.

Ben Arfa sends Brad Freidel the wrong way form the penalty spot

Alan Pardew was singing the Frenchman’s praises this morning, and that’s small wonder:

“People talk about passing and moving in the game.” “Actually, though, it is people taking people on that fans really love.”  “Ben Arfa was the bright spark in our team.”

“You need a player to sometimes unlock defenses.”  “He took people on all day and got both of their central midfield players booked in the first half.”  “Then he won us the penalty.”

“The other side to him was he did the job defensively for us.”  “He tucked in, put tackles in, won a header and he was disciplined.”  “He kept it simple when he needed to and he was definitely the man of the match in my opinion.” 

“They are a good side.” “They have great players and you have to remember that.”  “It was a big win for as we did not did not manage to beat them last year.”

Ben Arfa didn’t play too much in the pre-seaosn, and he should have been short of match fitness as Yohan Cabaye obviously was on Saturday, but Ben Arfa put on some show so early in the season.

What an acquisition this lad has been for Newcastle, after he forced his move through by jetting over form Marseilles in the summer of 2010, as he only wanted to play for the Magpies.

We’re not sure what Newcastle paid for him, but it’s anywhere from £2M to £5M, but he’s been a bargain buy and he’s just what Newcastle fans want to see, and follows in the footsteps of great French left wingers who have graced the St. James’ Park turf, including David Ginola and Laurent Robert.

It’s another good but for Newcastle at a time when clubs are still overpaying for their transfer targets. Robin van Persie is an excellent striker but is he worth £25M when he had one year left on his contract and would have been available for nothing next summer?

Remember that we got Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse through the door for less than £10M between them, and that’s what Newcastle are so good at these days, getting good deals.

And that’s even  if the summer transfer window can be just a little stressful and agonising for some Newcastle fans. 😀

As a comparison Papiss Cissee and Demba Ba scored 29 league goals between them last season for Newcastle and Robin van Persie scored 30 goals at Arsenal.

Comments welcome.

15 comments so far

  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:12 AM

    Comment #1

    He had a great game, reminded everyone why he’s so loved at Newcastle. More of the same please Benny boy!

  • 2_goal_tino

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:21 AM

    Comment #2

    My team for Thursday… Think Chelsea will be same team as spurs plus Colo. Anita will probably be on bench for Chelsea still so I expect him to start on Thursday

    Tav- Willo – Perch – Raylor
    —- Anita- Gosling /Bigi
    Obertan- Amalfi – Marv

    Sammy, vuckic, abeid, Campbell, ferguson, saylor and Ba on bench

  • martoon

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #3

    A lot of people forget it was actually Chris Houghton who took him on loan initially. Pardews bought him later on when he was still recovering from his injury.
    Talking of CH I felt sorry for him on Saturday but I’m sure he’ll turn it around (except when he plays against us) 😉

  • jesperfuglsang

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #4

    It seems Ki Sung-Yueng is going to be Allen’s replacement at Swansea…is he any good?

  • pieceofpapiss

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #5

    TalkSport are reporting that Man Citeh are preparing a bid for Tiote. Now TalkSport normally get things massivley wrong bit if they offered £30m plus Adam Johnson i’d take that.

  • jesperfuglsang

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    Comment #6

    2_goal_tino…I don’t think there will be radical change to the side we say against Spurs; but maybe we’ll go 4-3-3 or 4-3-2-1 as you posted 🙂

    I do expect to see either Colo or Jonas in lineup – maybe even both!

  • pieceofpapiss

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:26 AM

    Comment #7


    i’d prefer to play a stronger line up away and get the result before playing a weaker team at home.

  • jesperfuglsang

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:27 AM

    Comment #8

    If Pardew have a replacement in mind and Citeh offers silly money for Tiote, I could be okay with letting him go!

    …not counting on them asking me though 😉 lol

  • outsidethebox

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:31 AM

    Comment #9

    tbh although i like tiote he appears to be trying to hard and has lost the form and impact of last year and imo i wouldn,t be opposed to him moving on as long as silly money is paid anything over £20 m ….AS LONG AS MA SPENDS IT ..get debucy and a decent centre back…shawcross??.

  • jesperfuglsang

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:38 AM

    Comment #10

    Everton vs. Man Utd.

    What do you reckon? Miralles should available right?

  • james589

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #11

    Am I the only one who thinks Steven Taylor had an absolutely cracking game on Saturday? I thought he was great in the air and really strong and assured at the back. Fair enough, he only really had one striker to deal with, but that CB pairing can hardly have played together much before but together, him and Perch (who I’m finally starting to warm to a little) put in a really strong performance. Hands down man of the match for me, despite HBA’s brilliance. Great to see Tayls back, just hope he can stay fit and perform consistently, just like he said in the programme.

    I think our vulnerabilities were exploited from the wings, our full backs let Lennon and Bale run at them way too much and gave away a fair amount of possession. Simpson looked fair going forwards mind, but as the season goes on and the time on his contract ticks down, his mind will wander and we can’t rely on him all season unless we get him to sign a new deal. Really hoping we can get a decent, experience full-back through the door before the weekend, either Debuchy or Pieters would be great.

    Cabaye and Cisse both looked out of sorts, but I think that’s just a bit of rust that’ll be shaken off with a bit of game time under their belts.

    Luckily I’m not the manager- I thought HBA was starting to look tired prior to the penalty, he’d become quite stationary and looked as though he was flagging, I’d have subbed him, but the goal gave him (and everyone else) a massive lift. Just the sort of player we need- someone who can produce magic even when he’s looking tired!

    Thought Tiote and Guttierez both had good games too.

    In all, a great first game for us against a team who will be challenging for similar places to us in the league. Need to build on that on Saturday and hopefully get a new player through the door before then.

  • Robby Bobson

    Aug 20, 2012 at 11:51 AM

    Comment #12

    get debucy and a decent centre back…shawcross??.

    Insult to how perch is playing to buy shawcross

  • JDdubai

    Aug 20, 2012 at 1:11 PM

    Comment #13

    I think Tiote is the most replaceable out of our top players. I dont particularly want him to go, but if a bid of 25 mill + Adam Johnson came in then I would go for it.

    We already have Anita in, Bigi in a few years and with the money can get a replacement plus another 2 players just with the transfer money.

    Again would like to keep hi but it wouldnt be the end of the world, not like losing HBA as a replacement for him at the same standard would cost 20 million +.

  • gazzaforever

    Aug 20, 2012 at 3:22 PM

    Comment #14

    You cant replace benny

  • Owldman

    Aug 21, 2012 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #15

    Cisse has been fasting because of Ramadan but that has now ended just watch him pick up as he did last season


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