Ben Arfa’s Failure Is Newcastle’s Failure Too


When Ben Arfa first arrived at Newcastle airport in August of 2010, just after we had been promoted after a terrific season in the Championship that saw us get a massive 102 points and come straight back up under then manager Chris Hughton,  we had a young 23 year-old mercurial French international travel to Newcastle to try to force through a move to the club he wanted to play for – Newcastle United – while he was still on the books at Marseilles.

hatem ben arfa flying

Ben Arfa – was once flying at Newcastle United

Ben Arfa knew all about the great French players of the past, who had played on Tyneside, for former great Newcastle sides, and he wanted to do the same thing.

And while his career at Newcastle didn’t get off to a good start,  and he broke his leg in two places at the Etihad Stadium in October 2010, he recovered from that terrible injury, and he was ready and started to play again in the following season, during our American tour.

And Ben Arfa played very well for Newcastle in the second half of the 2011-2012 season,  and finally nailed down a starting place at the beginning of 2012, after he stepped up to the plate and did a lot more work than he had been used to in France, and we finished in 5th place in the Premier League – the best league finish since 2004 under Sir Bobby Robson.

And in that season, Ben Arfa graced St. James Park with some unbelievable individual goals, like those two efforts against Blackburn Rovers in the FA Cup and Bolton in the league, which Alan Pardew said at the time were two of the best individual goals ever seen at St. James’ Park, and he was right about that.

But fast forward two years and after two poor seasons, when we have been on some terrible runs in the league – we lost 10 of 13 league games in the 2012-2013 season, and in the season just finished we lost six in a row for the first time ever in the Premier League, and we lost eight of our last ten league games we played. 🙁

And Ben Arfa rarely played this year, and in the final games of the season he wasn’t even on the bench, as the relationship between Ben Arfa and manager Alan Pardew seemed to sink to new lows.

No one person is to blame for this situation – Ben Arfa has to take responsibility for not working hard enough on the field when he did get a chance, and presumably not following the instructions he was given when he did come on.

Alan Pardew has to take responsibility because here is a mercurial winger, blessed with terrific skills, whom the Newcastle fans love,  and we have simply been unable to get the best out of the player.

And now because we are more of a grafting side these days and cannot be accused of being successful, it’s hard for the present day Newcastle side to support a player like Ben Arfa – since everybody needs to work their socks off  just to be in the side.

And nobody is a winner if Ben Arfa does leave in the summer, which now looks to be almost certain.

Ben Arfa failed at Newcastle, and Alan Pardew and the club failed to get the best out of a very good player who first arrived at Newcastle, even though he had a reputation at the time for being hard to manage.

We’d  still love to see  Ben Arfa stay on Tyneside for next season, even though he will be in the final year of his five year contract, and maybe also Sylvain Marveaux, who we haven’t seen the best of in his three years on Tyneside – but he’s another good player with good skills.

But it’s very likely that both players will leave the club this summer and everybody will lose – the player(s), the manager, the club and the Newcastle fans.

And we still think if Ben Arfa does leave, he will be picked up by a Champions League club – and that’s a statement in itself.

Comments welcome.



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117 comments so far

  • Rotonda heights

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:34 PM

    Comment #1

    http://www.getfootballnewsfrance.com/2014/arsenal-and-newcastle-on-kingsley-comans-tail/

    I really like this kind of thing but I bet Carr can’t stand Pardew’s non-development of his finds.

    Just hope Kemen, M’Babu, Armstrong, Satka etc don’t get” pardewed” with negativity and exhausting percentage hoofball.

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  • Graeme

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:36 PM

    Comment #2

    P45DUE should hang his head in shame – that he is a dinosaur is without doubt, but not getting the best out of the players you do have at your disposal is an absolute disgrace to his profession.

    Does he care? Shit, does he even realise that he is at fault here?
    I very much doubt it – that’s sad.

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  • Graeme

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:40 PM

    Comment #3

    Rotonda – why would such a player be interested in joining NUFC? He surely has far more choices where he could get great training, help him develop into something special.

    Sad to say, but we are not in that position.

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  • Rotonda heights

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:41 PM

    Comment #4

    toonking

    Well remy has gone, debuchy is wanting out too. sissoko is being looked at, as are Tiote and krul.

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  • Rotonda heights

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:42 PM

    Comment #5

    graeme

    Nail on head. Pardew can’t even see the problems so how can he address them. scandalous he is still here.

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  • scout

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:45 PM

    Comment #6

    How many people would argue if they bulleted Pardew and got in a cheaper manager from the Championship? Not many, and ive watched some great football from lower down using very much lesser quality players.
    Also Reme Garde linked with Brighton, a sleeping giant of a club. Please Ashley if youre not planning on spending Pardew must go

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  • scout

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:47 PM

    Comment #7

    Id sooner have Paul Clement anyone agree?

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  • toon22

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:48 PM

    Comment #8

    To be fair Ben Arfas a show poney,how many games has he ran one too many players and lost the ball.
    There just no end product from him,true to form he has fallen out with another manager.Dont get me wrong i would drive P45due to the airport myself if he would leave.But as for Arfa he just isnt going to improve the team.
    Hes a winger who cant cross,cant pass and is regularly injured or fallen out with which ever manager no matter what team he is in.

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  • Sazzer

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:48 PM

    Comment #9

    Everton have made a £4m bid for Deeney.

    Swansea City agree a £6.5m fee with FC Twente for forward Luc Castaignos.

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  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:53 PM

    Comment #10

    Anyone know about – PSG midfielder Kingsley Coman – young kid said to be interested in coming to the TOON

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  • tynesidetommo

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:54 PM

    Comment #11

    Don’t understand how the finger if blame can be pointed when we have not been privy to what’s been happening behind the scenes. I can only trust what I see with my own eyes – a talented lad who looks more like the bulky Hulk than a skin professional athlete

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  • beermonkey

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:56 PM

    Comment #12

    this talented striker we have supposed to have signed from Spanish 2nd div cant remember his name

    along with his signature it was rumoured that the reason he chose us is the plan the club have to get the best out of him does any1 know what this great plan is, and are any other of out talented strikers on it or any other of our young talented players

    doesany1 know what the plan is cos the kid is gonna be very disappointed when he realises it involves st Mirren and Rotherham onloan via gateshead

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  • nut meg

    Jun 1, 2014 at 4:57 PM

    Comment #13

    Scout @ 7
    IMHO a top quality coach is what we are crying out for & PC fits the bill so yes I agree.

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  • spitfire_

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:00 PM

    Comment #14

    Charlie in the Gallowgate

    I know that if he came to Newcastle, he will be the next player ruined by P45DUE.

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  • nut meg

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:00 PM

    Comment #15

    beermonkey
    Shush it’s a …secret man.

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  • scout

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:03 PM

    Comment #16

    Nut meg
    why dont we get the lad involved, whatever they do all week isnt working so get him in to change things.
    Has anyone ever watched a proper coaching session, you wouldnt look like HBA if youre training correctly

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  • Toon-Prodigy

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:10 PM

    Comment #17

    I think everyone deserves their fair share of the blame.

    Ashley, for the lack of ambition which results in poor morale, lack of determination and incentives. And also the poor timing of letting our top players go and not replacing them at the same point in time, this disrupts the team as whole and affects performances on the pitch.

    Pardew\coaches, for not getting the best out of him during the full course of his contract when he has been available.

    The player himself, poor attitude. Proved to be a complete liability when selected this season. His problems has always been his consistency and attitude not just with NUFC but every other club he has been at.

    But this is what you get far too often with Ashley. Players with behaviourial problems, loop holes in contracts, cheap imports either unproven or riddled with problems.

    I’ll be shocked when this club actually goes out and buys like a genuine honest football club again. Actually spends the money to get a proven Premier League footballer through the door and of course pay the going rate.

    Dreaming maybe.

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  • nut meg

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:10 PM

    Comment #18

    Scout
    He let it be known last week that he was ready to come to the Premier league but I’m pretty sure he was meaning as a manager.They won’t sack Pardew & he won’t walk so what they could do is to move sh#t for brains upstairs to make room for PC as new head coach…..easy peezy eh.

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  • welshgeordie9

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:11 PM

    Comment #19

    Forget the players i mentioned earlier, watching the the final arsenal ladies vs everton i would get smith and yankey from arsenal.

    Get your money out Ashley

    Ha ha ha

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  • Ancientcoptic

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:12 PM

    Comment #20

    toon22 – What makes you think Ben Arfa has fallen out with the manager?

    Btw- Ben Arfa had a pass completion of 84.5% – not bad for having an off season. That is higher than Cabaye, who had 82% playing for us last season before he left.

    Anita is supposed to be a great passer, and again Anita has a lower pass completion with 83.8%

    Benny didn’t get much game time last season, and out of our current squad, was still the 2nd highest performer in terms of goals and assists… remembering that he keeps getting played in different positions and dropped out of the team, which hinders any players ability to perform at their peak.

    Looking at Ben Arfa’s stats, most people would find that a lot of what is said about him is mostly untrue.

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  • scout

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:12 PM

    Comment #21

    Nut meg

    well said lad

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  • scout

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:13 PM

    Comment #22

    Im better than that Anita, id sooner have charlie adam

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  • Ulster_Toon

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:15 PM

    Comment #23

    This is going to be one depressing summer of being linked with poor players. Not getting senior players in. Then calling abeid and tav “like new singings” then a season of crap football and finish about 16th again. If we get no quality players in given how much money we can spend (which is a lot) pardew should walk with what dignity he has left.

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  • scout

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:16 PM

    Comment #24

    Have things got so bad that they’re no wingers who can beat a defender and cross a football, as we seem to have none??
    Remember Gillespie bombing down the wing like yogi bear and whipping ball after ball over pinpoint. Great days

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  • nut meg

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:27 PM

    Comment #25

    Scout
    If you want to see a player who can do what your asking then check out this player. Dusan Tadic FC Twente.If you like stats you’ll be slavering down your chin when you read what this boy has been doing year in,year out.Let me know what you think……….. i said last year i wasn’t going to say his name again…shit.

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  • scout

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:33 PM

    Comment #26

    Nut meg
    You’re not wrong there he looks the business, can’t be on big wages at twente either.
    BLOG to ASHLEY do you copy squire…

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  • beermonkey

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:49 PM

    Comment #27

    nut meg

    sorry I didn’t know

    0
  • Rotonda heights

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:55 PM

    Comment #28

    scout

    paul clement is a great shout but ash has probably never heard of him !

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  • Rotonda heights

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:57 PM

    Comment #29

    ulster

    That boat sailed a long time ago. the headbutt should have been the end

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  • Rotonda heights

    Jun 1, 2014 at 5:59 PM

    Comment #30

    nut meg @18

    if only!!

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  • jesperfuglsang - captain of the lemon crew

    Jun 1, 2014 at 6:01 PM

    Comment #31

    Some of us would like to see Benny here next season (I know s few who wouldn’t 😉 )

    …the problem here is not Benny; you could take him out of the equation and the problems will persist!

    0
  • Bambams

    Jun 1, 2014 at 6:07 PM

    Comment #32

    To me the biggest change to any one player is not Benny but Sissoko.
    I remember P45due saying when we bought him that he went to see him play and told whoever went with him “I would love to have him in my team” or words similar. When Siss first played for us he was absolutely a beast. Remember him doing Ashley Cole on the wing….But now he is half the player because we do not play enough attacking football…But you lot know that and the rest !
    Imo

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  • Rotonda heights

    Jun 1, 2014 at 6:20 PM

    Comment #33

    The idea to have an Arsenal of the North is not bad in principle at all, but you must have excellent coaches and a manager to fulfil the potential or it’s a total waste of time. Simply not going to develop anyone with pardew, stone and carver who won’t upgrade themselves to modern coaching methods .

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  • scout

    Jun 1, 2014 at 6:32 PM

    Comment #34

    Carver
    Pardew
    Stone

    Crown prosecution service

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  • welshgeordie9

    Jun 1, 2014 at 6:48 PM

    Comment #35

    So swans have had 6.5 million bid accepted by FC twente for one of their forwards, boy is my city going to be a team next season

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  • welshgeordie9

    Jun 1, 2014 at 6:50 PM

    Comment #36

    Pardew and Ashley want to take a leaf out of Jenkins and monks book

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  • Rotonda heights

    Jun 1, 2014 at 6:52 PM

    Comment #37

    welsh

    swansea have had the right blueprint with their managerial appointments for years

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  • Ben

    Jun 1, 2014 at 6:54 PM

    Comment #38

    The word Mercurial only used twice. Tut tut.

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  • Marty-Toon

    Jun 1, 2014 at 6:54 PM

    Comment #39

    He’s so blessed with skills but loses the ball way too easily to be called one of the best.
    Mr.Pardew doesn’t have a clue how to use players most of the time.
    Ben Arfa should’ve fitted perfectly in front of a Four man midfield with De Jong and Remy ahead of him.
    Had he been playing for Brendan Rogers Liverpool he’d have been excellent his year and used like Coutinho.
    He was difficult to mark on the right but would’ve been much better in the middle or Nr.10 spot under a decent manager.
    Rubbish last four months of the season by all accounts by the whole team and it’ll just be worse next season,I for one cannot see our squad being strengthened or even get the same amount of players in to replace those going out.

    Really excited …..NOT

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  • welshgeordie9

    Jun 1, 2014 at 6:56 PM

    Comment #40

    Rotonda heights

    i know that, i wish newcastle was the same

    0

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