Ben Arfa Working His Magic To The Euros
The progress of Hatem Ben Arfa has been phenomenal in recent weeks and it is no coincidence that it has coincided with an outstanding run of results & performances that have put Newcastle United on the brink of Champions League qualification.
Little wonder that Newcastle United and Hatem Ben Arfa are attracting massive attention back home, taking up many column inches in the media, such as the following excerpts from respected French sports newspaper L’Equipe.
Ben Arfa The Magician!
Author of one of the best goals (v Bolton) of the season in England, Hatem Ben Arfa multiplies his prowess for several weeks with his club Newcastle. Enough to convince Laurent Blanc to take him to the Euro?
Ben Arfa was selected for the French National team in Laurent Blanc’s first game as coach of the France team in August 2010, Hatem scoring a goal against Norway (1-2). Then came the horrific foul by De Jong which meant Ben Arfa had a temporary halt put on him adding to his eight internation caps which have yielded two goals.
Absent from the qualifying campaign for Euro, the former child prodigy and former enfant terrible of French football has today an incredible opportunity to participate in the competition this summer. Recently he regained a regular place with the Magpies, and subsequently a string of top-flight performances, like his incredible goal scored Monday against Bolton (2-0).
Alan Pardew has shown total support for Ben Arfa’s surge towards possible national selection and must know that like many flair players they thrive on recognition. Hence, Pardew’s clever regular late substitutions so Hatem can get his very own standing ovation after creating magic like he did against Bolton.
Pardew: “He Is Magic!”
Less than a month ago Pardew was saying in L’Equipe.”This guy is exceptional and I must find a way to make him play,” said coach Alan Pardew, After having finally found a place in the team the English trainerdoes not regret his choice now: not only his team wins again and can dream of a Champions League qualification for next season, but Ben Arfa sparkles. “He’s magic,” exclaimed Pardew on Monday following his latest accomplishment from his prodigy “This is a very special goal. He went straight through the heart of their team and few players are capable of doing this “
Even Ben Arfa’s team mates have been pitching in to try and help the French genius achieve his dream recall.
“It’s beautiful,” said his team matePapiss Cisse, in French on the club Official site. One can only guess at this stage if Laurent Blanc is of the same opinion.Only five more Premiership matches to increase the odds in his favour. if all around him agree that Ben Arfa has now regained all his qualities, this will not necessarily mean a place in the team that he has had no contact with for almost two years.”He is a magician, as Messi can be. He has a special talent. Even if he were to be selected as a wildcard, it has a great opportunity, “Pardew said again last week in Le Parisien, to try to convince Blanc. “I hope this will push the coach to integrate him into the France team, he still insisted on Monday because that is what the player wants at any cost.” The interested party (Ben Arfa) has only just five Premiership matches to express himself and put the odds on his side. “I’ll give it all” he announced a few days ago. “I remain hopeful”.
Many thanks as always to Pierre for the translation and to read the full article (in French) go here.
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