Hatem Ben Arfa is in the middle of  a purple patch at Newcastle United but is he the club’s greatest ever French winger?

He’s scored some outstanding goals in a limited number of matches but does he deserve yet to be ranked above David Ginola and Laurent Robert?

In his first four months Ginola was unbelievable, it was like the ball was stuck to his feet as Premier League defenders couldn’t get near him, you have to say though that an overall record of only 6 goals in 58 Newcastle matches is a poor return, no matter how entertaining he was.

Hatem Ben Arfa has actually already overtaken Ginola in the goals stakes but has some way to go if he is to better Laurent Robert’s fabulous 30 goals in 129 games.

Like Ben Arfa, Robert was a ‘quirky’ character but one other similarity was that he didn’t score many tap-ins either!

However, as well as his many assists, especially for Shearer, Laurent Robert’s stock goal was a long range screamer – often from free-kicks.

Watch this class video footage and decide for yourself whether Ben Arfa still has some catching up to do with Laurent Robert.

The odd clip of Robert’s dribbling has echoes of Ben Arfa, if Hatem can add Robert style free-kicks then that would be a massive bonus.

Sit back and enjoy the original Hatem Ben Arfa, another player who the word ‘entertainer’ was made for, another classic video, courtesy of The Mag’s YouTube Channel
[youtube_sc url=”http://youtu.be/9I5OMTzAFsA” rel=”0″ showinfo=”0″]

  • Sharpie

    Still early days for HBA but the fact that we’re getting him to work back and help the team is encouraging. Both of his last two goals started when he got the ball inside his own half, against WBA he picked it up not far from our own area, Robert would have gotten a nosebleed tracking back so far.

    • GeordieBri

      Let’s just hope that the pricks (some of whom claim to be Newcastle fans) who chased Ginola and Robert out of toon with their….lazy French barsteward taunts are not allowed to get after Ben Arfa when his form dips (if you sit near them make sure you put them straight)…..as for how he compares to our former French greats….. well he certainly has all of the attributes to surpass both of them, however he will need to prove it over the longer term….providing the idiots who run out just and righteous club don’t decide to flog him to the highest bidder in the summer….but don’t hold your breath…..Aleez les Toon…Allez les Toon …Allez.

  • Critic

    Ben Arfa is going to just get better and better, now he’s got the ethic of working for the good of the team I see no reason why in the future we won’t have another Messi/Zidane on our hands.

    The guy is amazing, but he needs to continue on and develop his repetioure and game further before he can truly be seen in that class.

  • Dan

    Robert was too keen on himself and only played when he wanted.  Great strikes against Spurs but otherwise HBA will hopefully knock him into touch over the next year! Ginola was class for the first season.

  • Sharpie

    Ginola was great for the first 4-5 months until that quarter-final at Arsenal where Gerald Ashby, who may have felt pressurised after Lou Macari made comments about how he reffed an earlier tie against Stoke where David was on the end of some very agricultural challenges, let Dixon and Winterburn kick him off the park (thank Goodness Premier League football has advanced to a point where fewer of these troglodytes get to play at the top level anymore. Outside of Sunderland, anyway…). A bit like David Silva this season, after that his form waned and the title run-in that followed is well documented. 

  • Toon 1892

    Forgot how good Robert was but I think hba is technically more gifted and now has a good work ethic. It was a joy watching them again :-)

  • froldinio del fartio

    Ginola’s early months were unbelievable, remember him taking the mickey out of neil cox against boro on our deadball line, fantastic stuff, saw so many things i’d never seen a player do before. Robert created and scored – used to put so many great crosses over, and his goals were never dull. HBA, early days but looks the business – fingers crossed he will outshine the other two.