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Newcastle United’s Velcro Man

9 years ago

Some players have soft feet.  It is an old cliche that used to be applied to clever players like Tony Green, Chris Waddle and of course, Peter Beardsley.

Against Stoke recently, Hatem Ben Arfa trapped a long crossfield ball so neatly it nestled under his foot, his left one, naturally.

Comparisons with these giants of the past are valid and, in some respects, Ben Arfa is better. He is physically stronger, especially running with the ball, and shoots more powerfully than any of them.

Beardsley’s all round play was was better than Ben Arfa but the French artist’s game is still evolving. You can speculate how much better he could be with two good feet.

With all one footed players, defenders know which way you are going.

Gutierrez’s crossing with his left foot is erratic, he would be much more productive if the connection between his brain and his weaker foot was stronger. So I suggest Ben Arfa’s potency would increase.

I have a vision of him getting to the bye-line and cutting the ball back for Ba and Cisse to get tap-ins, or crossing the ball onto their heads.

A few extra goals could make all in the dirrerence in a season.

Having two soft feet is not a soft idea.


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