Alan Pardew has admitted he was very surprised when Ben Arfa took the penalty last Saturday against Tottenham as Demba Ba is now the official penalty taker for Newcastle, but we wonder if the Frenchman will take the penalties he earns for Newcastle this season?
The answer to that could well be yes.
Ben Arfa easily beats Freidel from the penalty spot last Saturday
The Newcastle manager has talked in the local press today about his two top Senegal strikers, and we are hoping they can notch some goals this afternoon in London:
“They love to score goals and we will be looking for that again.” “We changed our system against Spurs, but we kept both strikers on.” “We asked him to do a job on the left-hand side in the second half.”
“I am not going to disguise the fact that, while he was brilliant in the second half of last season, he did not contribute with the goals he would have liked.” “He could not have worked any harder, but sometimes it just does not go your way.”
“He had to look after Walker and sometimes when you keep your strikers on they come up with a bit of magic.” “It was a great goal.” “I was very surprised, actually, that Ba did not take the penalty last week.”
It’s interesting that Alan was as surprised as the rest of us when Hatem Ben Arfa took the penalty last week against Tottenham, and since he scored there was no problem, but there would have been if he had missed – in fact it would have been a huge talking point after the game.
And what are the chances he will take one again if he is the one fouled for the penalty – we think the chances are high of that happening – and as long as Newcastle score, we don’t care who takes the penalties for Newcastle.
And with Ramadan now over, both Papiss Cisse and Demba Ba will be eating and drinking again in daylight hours, and if there was any weakness due to the fasting during Ramadan, that should be over now, and perhaps they can celebrate that with some goals at Stamford Bridge this afternoon?
Demba Ba admitted that the fasting can have a negative effect on his form, as it seemed to have last year at this time:
“Sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn’t.” “Now I am back to eating lots and drinking lots again.”
We’re looking for another good display from the lads this afternoon in London, and anything but a defeat will bring a good close to the first week of the season for Newcastle.
You can also reach Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org