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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 Fit For Benfica Game – Colo Back For West Brom

3:38 pm, Wednesday, April 10th, 2013 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 79 Comments

After the disappointing news today that Steven Taylor is likely to miss the game tomorrow night against Benfica, after picking up another injury in training, Alan Pardew had some good news,  that French International Hatem Ben Arfa is available for the game.

ben arfa anzhi

Ben Arfa – last time he played in Moscow against Anzhi

The Frenchman had returned to France a few weeks ago, after Alan Pardew had said he would be out for the rest of the season, and that he would need an operation on his troublesome  hamstring.

But several specialists took a look at the hamstring, and said there was scar tissue there, but that he could play with no ill effects, and they said his hamstring was 100%.

The last time Ben Arfa played was in the Europa League, when we played Anzhi in Moscow, and he had a good game, but then had a bad reaction after the game, which led to Pardew saying he needed an operation.

This is what Alan Pardew said about the mercurial winger this afternoon:

“Hatem has made an unbelievable recovery.” “He will be involved tomorrow and I’m sure if he’s needed he will be somebody that can turn the game.”

“Cheick Tiote and Mathieu Debuchy – who’s obviously unavailable – are both going to be training tomorrow, which is good news for us.”

“Other than Steven Taylor, everybody else is available.” “We’re not far away but tomorrow night is probably just too soon for a couple of the key hitters.”

It remains to be seen if Alan Pardew will use Ben Arfa tomorrow night, although he says he will be involved, but we have a feeling that he will be held back for the important game against Sunderland on Sunday afternoon, where a win against our local rivals could see us safe in the Premier League, and 8 points above Sunderland.

Ben Arfa will probably start on the bench tomorrow night against Benfica.

fabricio coloccini in action

Fab Coloccini – back for game at West Brom

The other good new is that Fabricio Coloccini should be fit to play at West Brom in ten days time, on Saturday 20th April, and we have a decent chance of picking up something from that game at the Hawthorns.

This is what Alan said about Colo

“Fabricio Coloccini I would say is looking at West Brom in terms of our fixture list – he has perhaps a small chance of that game – but we’re almost there.”

Comments welcome.

Note:  For those attending Thursday’s game (and Sunday too) please bring your scarves to the the game, as there is an effort to recreate the atmosphere at Alan Shearer’s testimonial, and hopefully inspire our lads to two famous wins.

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Tags: Europa League · European Competition · Fabricio Coloccini · Hatem Ben Arfa · Newcastle News · Premier League

79 responses so far ↓

  • 1 barkintoonfan9 // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:40 PM

    wow just got a little turned on… please dont be a keiron dyear hatem!!!

  • 2 Shane // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:41 PM

    Steven Taylor is fit and will play, trust me.

  • 3 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:45 PM


  • 4 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:45 PM


  • 5 AwToonnufc // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:46 PM

    Happy he is back and is good to have as an option on the bench if we need him…But I would much rather keep him fit for sunday. Can’t wait to see him back. I’d advise anyone to go on youtube and look at it shows just how good he is and how much he can contribute to the team. It’ll be nice to see him with the new signings as well!

  • 6 Cisse's Big Toe // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:47 PM


    oh yes as a club representative i will trust you

  • 7 Markaccus // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:48 PM

    Oh well. 3511 tomorrow.
    Simmo yanga perch
    Gutz marv sissoko anita haidara

    Gutz and haidara as wingbacks although could put anita at rwb and put gutz in feild. The 3 central mids all pile forward when they can. Make it an attacking formation. Nowt to lose

  • 8 do the hatem shake // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:48 PM

    i think ben arfa will get on in the last 20 mins if its 1-0 to us just to get that creativity and if he survives 20 minutes then i can see a start against sunderland we just have to wait and see and for medical staff i have to say what the f-ck are you guys doing you idiots i mean telling us that ben arfa out for the full season then now hes back i just think we need to revamp the backroom staff

  • 9 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:49 PM


  • 10 Jackel001 // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:49 PM

    Rather rest the two of them for Sunday.

  • 11 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:51 PM


  • 12 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:53 PM


  • 13 G // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:55 PM

    dids, great enthusiasm, but Caps Lock isn’t your friend.

  • 14 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:56 PM

    ggggggg mannnnn rocking rocking rocking celebrate the style i know u cant forget ime crazy for u too. i dont wanna stop this feeling now

  • 15 wolfshead@toon // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:56 PM

    dids why are you shouting? haha

  • 16 Jayden // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:57 PM

    Shane, how do you know?

    ( Inquisitive, not challenging :) )

  • 17 toonfan91 // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:58 PM

    Wouldnt be suprised if this was a ploy just to save saylor for the derby since he has played every game for the last 3 months

  • 18 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:58 PM

    wen i say business WOLF you say BANGINGGGGGGGGG rocking on and on and onnnnnn

  • 19 wolfshead@toon // Apr 10, 2013 at 3:59 PM

    ok dids dude :-)

  • 20 G // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:00 PM

    Whatever your drinking dids, it’s working, but I think you might want to make this one your last.

  • 21 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:01 PM

    i simply wanna say close to u 1 more dayyyy, b with me one more night i love u toon

  • 22 Markaccus // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:01 PM

    Dids can i borrow some of your drugs, please. Horse tranqs is it?

  • 23 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:02 PM

    time to come alive u are the onlyy 1 for me

  • 24 Markaccus // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:02 PM


  • 25 G // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:03 PM

    @22. I reckon he must have been hitting the Asda Smart Price Corned Beef!

  • 26 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:03 PM

    isent that illegal

  • 27 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:03 PM

    either way i wanna play

  • 28 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:04 PM

    gggggg u heard the tune see ya l8a gee ude love it

  • 29 Jayden // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:04 PM

    dids, Daddy’ll be home in an hour, he’ll want his laptop back :)

  • 30 Markaccus // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:05 PM

    @ G….. yeah he’s ripped to the t1tz on budget lasagne

  • 31 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:06 PM

    mini dids is out playing with the horses in the back garden mate u tripping r wat

  • 32 wolfshead@toon // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:06 PM

    dids is keith at the milk barn :- )

  • 33 G // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    @28, I have no idea what that means, when my teenage daughter gets home I will ask her to translate.

  • 34 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    dont u know how many times ime running like the wind

  • 35 Markaccus // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:08 PM

    Milk dids? Aren’t they an american sweet?

  • 36 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:09 PM

    its not my religion its an assassination

  • 37 Markaccus // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:09 PM

    All those drugs will give you wind and the runs, dids. Get some imodium.

  • 38 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:10 PM

    milky beans try it very sweet

  • 39 wolfshead@toon // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:12 PM

    lol well im having fun

  • 40 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:14 PM

    just get to the seriousness of the blog lads discuss lol williamson in for stevie gee how do u fancy our chances now. bookies robbed us again STANDARD

  • 41 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:15 PM

    200 quid on at 2/1 before the tie started now i need a miracle

  • 42 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:15 PM

    shud of invested in a cow aye woundedddd

  • 43 Beattie25 // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:17 PM

    I have my ears pretty close to the ground.

    Dids is a street term for MDMA (ecstasy tablets).

  • 44 JackButler // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:20 PM

    HBA come’s back only to pull up again and we lose him for pre season??????????

    If he breaks down again the medical team need sacking asap

  • 45 Charlietoon // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:20 PM

    Hatem shake Pards actually came out and said that he told Hatem he would be out for the season because he wanted to clear his head and see where he was. He has obviously reacted well, got stuck in at training and not gone off and had a hissy fit like he might have done a year or two ago. It just goes to show that Pards priority is the team and the players and if motivating them means he has to tell the press a few fibs he will do that. Good on him. it’s his job to get the players going even if it means we sometimes dont get the full story.

  • 46 TorqToon // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:21 PM

    Dids – You need a doctor, like? :-)

  • 47 dids // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:23 PM

    ambulance asap the cows collapsed when i tried milking his tits

  • 48 JackButler // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:30 PM

    Would not like to see either Saylor or M’Biwa dropped for Colo, he has to earn his place back and not just walk back into the side

  • 49 Jackel001 // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:36 PM

    I can see the first 10 minutes tomorrow being very nervy on the pitch from the lads due to the crowd. If we can get to 60 minz without conceding then I think pards will just go for it.

    But I wouldn’t have anything bad to say against him if we did concede he brought off main players for Sunday. Much more important imo!

  • 50 JackButler // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    Tomorrow night is a distraction for Sunday.
    Three points is far ore important to us (still hope we win though 😀 )

  • 51 Yorkgeordie // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:39 PM

    The provisional squad listed on the ITV site does not mention Haidara.

  • 52 TorqToon // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:40 PM

    Jackel – You can be assured many on here will moan about certain players being subbed ready for Sunday.

    But something’s never change! Haha

  • 53 JackButler // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:42 PM

    I’m absolutely gutted that because of our league position we can’t go all out to get to the semi-final, but this is Newcastle where nothing is ever easy

  • 54 ajcrawfs // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:46 PM

    is Perch still injured? what does everyone reckon to perch at CB instead?

  • 55 G // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:47 PM

    Agreed JackButler, but to be honest, if I were managing the club (Thankfully, I aint!) then I would be going into this game with one eye on Sunday’s game. Far more at stake there in terms of finances and local bragging rights. It would be nice to be able to go into this one full steam ahead, but we just don’t have that luxary.

  • 56 Spoof // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:47 PM

    Dids is an acronym, what it stands for is “Division of Intellectual Disabilities Services” sort of fits doesn’t it.

  • 57 JAMSHA // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:50 PM

    Colo wont make it… so dats it… he played his last game

  • 58 G // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:55 PM

    Saw this geezer checking into a hotel in the toon today (Jury’s Inn), and I have to say, this guys owns the most impressive football coat ever:
    Its a full lengh gown afair with shoulder pads. He looks like a wizard without his hat, and wouldn’t look out of place in a convention involving Dumbledore and Gandalf. Looking forward to seeing this bloke at the match tommorow.

  • 59 Toon Tang // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    do we really want to dislodge mbiwa now ? i wouldnt put collo back in, yanga looks quality. just a couple of little mistakes here and there but nowt too costly.

    when collo came back last time he played a blinder against west brom and then went reet of the boil. Probs got an eye on his outbound flight anyways eh

  • 60 Rotonda heights // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:57 PM


    With Saylor crocked yet again Colo should walk back in ahead of Willo! Colo is a great footballer and M’Biwa is cool and collected as well as very quick.

    Saylor has great passion but not the skills of the other 2 and is always injured and brings out that daft handball – fake injury routine a bit too often for my liking.

    Is Santon injured again as well? I dread Simmo and Willo both playing. At least if Haidara is playing Santon could have moved over.

  • 61 G // Apr 10, 2013 at 4:59 PM

    Has Colo even been training yet? Haven’t heard anything about his rehab.

  • 62 Toon-Prodigy // Apr 10, 2013 at 5:01 PM

    Williamson at the back? I hope he is ready to pull out all the stops.

    I have to say Im a little worried about his confidence and the lack of 1st team games since January.

    Another injury, (sigh)

  • 63 Spoof // Apr 10, 2013 at 5:06 PM

    Rotonda, I could be wrong but I’m sure that I heard that Santon is out for the season, but moving on to Willo I hope he does get the chance to play alongside Mbiwa and prove so many people wrong, Willo has been unfortunate because the only times he has played has been with either Perch who is not a CB or with Colo who is the most over rated CB in the history of Newcastle United, he is slow, he can’t head a ball and he is a coward who always turns his back rather than take a painful hit, if Willo does indeed play alongside Mbiwa it will be the first time that he has played with a good partner, don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting that Willo is good, but he is no where near as bad as many make him out to be, and this could be his chance too prove it.

  • 64 Toon-Prodigy // Apr 10, 2013 at 5:18 PM


    Taylor has been immence for us and one of the major factors we will be staying in the premier league this season. He came back when we desperately needed him in January. He has been absolute class since he came back in January, I,v lost count already how many times he has put his body on the line or made last ditch tackles.

    He has been doing so well he earned an England call up.

    If it wasn’t for Taylor and Cabaye coming back into the fold in January we would be down into the championship. M’bwia still has to get to grips with this league. He has been suspect on more than one occasion in his run of games. Im putting this down to getting to grasps with the ins and outs of the Premier League. He looks good but he has alot to learn in this league yet. I won’t judge him thoroughly though until next season.

  • 65 Shane // Apr 10, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    My source is Pardew at todays press conference when I say believe me Steven is not injured. Have faith lads.

  • 66 bills-son // Apr 10, 2013 at 5:51 PM

    Taylor is a massive miss for tomorrow – not just as a footballer but for his battle cry attitude and never say die spirit.

    I hope Perch is fit to alongside Mbiwa because Willo isn’t the guy to face Benfica’s fast tricky forward play. I would also hate him to make a mistake that allowed them to score first and effectively kill the tie. He could get real stick from the crowd and a decent guy like Willo who has given the best he can for NUFC wouldn’t deserve that.

  • 67 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Apr 10, 2013 at 5:52 PM

    Debuchy and Tiote will train tomorrow – from Pardews today – BBC Radio Newcastle – Total Sport

  • 68 Toon-Prodigy // Apr 10, 2013 at 5:55 PM

    This Ben Arfa injury has got to go down as one of the most bizaare ever. What on earth has he been upto? What is the recovery time for a hamstring? 6 weeks? He’s been out four months or so? Then he is deemed fit but clearly visibly out of shape. Then he has a setback and is ruled out the season and now has made a miraculous recovery?

    There is a rabbit off somewhere.

  • 69 Toon-Prodigy // Apr 10, 2013 at 6:02 PM

    If it’s just a knock in regards to Taylor, you would think he is maybe just being held back for Sundays game.

    We need his passion and commitment in that game. If he can play both then he should play both. I understand him being left out though as a precaution with our injuries at the minute.

  • 70 Jackel001 // Apr 10, 2013 at 6:02 PM


    Maybe liverpool want to see him play for the swap for Carroll can go through?

    But yeah agree that its very strange!

  • 71 @timuJ // Apr 10, 2013 at 6:05 PM

    wtf one direction at newcastle’s training ground

  • 72 Jackel001 // Apr 10, 2013 at 6:07 PM

    New signings Tim.

  • 73 PotugueseTOON // Apr 10, 2013 at 6:10 PM

    hello all
    D.Simpson S.Taylor Y:Mbwia Haidara
    Anita Perch
    Sissoko Guti
    I think S. Taylor injury it s a bluff . If not, we are in trouble…….. .

  • 74 jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew // Apr 10, 2013 at 6:23 PM

    Prodigy…a regular hamstring is 4-6 on the sideline with rehabilitation.

    …if it is any worse than that it will be detected on a scan and he wouldd not play 16 days after the damage.

    4 months is very unusual and he did come back from France out of fitness which should noot happen.

    I have said before that the club have mismanaged his hamsting and for me the responsiibility lies with the manager in the end!

    Some doesn’t like to hear this, but this is how I see it :-(

  • 75 Toon-Prodigy // Apr 10, 2013 at 6:26 PM


    I doubt that is the case, but the whole scenario is off somewhere. It’s been a bit of a farce by everyone involved. My spider sence is pointing towards a poor attidude by Ben Arfa while back in France. Pardew did give him a bollicking when he returned I think I recall.

    Probably a mixture of things. Lack of commitment by Ben Arfa not keeping himself in shape in regards to his lifestyle and diet. Poorly treated over in France. Could be anything. This long a spell out without an operation seems really strange though. Even if he was operated on he would of been back alot sooner than this. I don’t buy all these miraculous recoverys. Infact it’s hardly a miraculous recovery is it haha? He’s been out since December!

    “Miraculous recovery”. Probable football translation = His attitude and motivation has now been corrected and he will now come into contention!

  • 76 Toon-Prodigy // Apr 10, 2013 at 6:35 PM

    Alreet Jesper,

    Im unsure how Pardew would fit into this? Surely as a manager you send your player off to recover trusting he will be in the best possible hands? And that he will return good as new? The player in question will have the correct attitude whilst away as this is his responsibility as a professional footballer?

    Im under the impression a manager is guided and given imformation regarding injuries by his medical staff. The manager is just waiting for the green light to be given when he is in ready.

    This is when the player returns to training to raise his fitness and gain match experience bringing him into contention for the first team. The manager will then assess him, talk to him to see how he feels. If he maybe suffering from any discomfort in regards to the injury? If he is ready and the player says he is then it’s all systems go.

  • 77 lesh // Apr 10, 2013 at 6:53 PM

    G @58,,, could that guy with the coat be a reincarnation of Demis Roussos?

  • 78 Spoof // Apr 10, 2013 at 7:30 PM

    Jesper, Pardew is a football manager, not a doctor or a physiotherapist, to blame Pardew or any other manager for a player’s injury too be mis-treat is totally wrong, BenArfa’s injury may have been badly handled but you can’t blame the manager, he can only act upon the advice given to him

  • 79 G // Apr 10, 2013 at 10:17 PM

    @77, sorry bout the slow response. When I saw the bloke I had to do a double take. I thought it was Roy Wood from Wizard. I expected him to start belting out rubbish about the bells ringing out etc.

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