Alan Pardew Heading For Confession?
On top of his vicious assault on the match official (which predictably much of the national press want to make the story of Saturday’s match), Alan Pardew has also been ‘confessing’ to the Sunday Sun about his game plan surrounding Hatem Ben Arfa;
“For me, Hatem was the stand-out player today.
He was taking people on in all areas of the pitch and even got two of the Spurs players booked early on.
Hatem won and scored the penalty and you need players like this if you are going to do well.
It was a little white lie by me (stating Ben Arfa wouldn’t start). I don’t tell too many, but that was one.
He looked sharp in training. The only thing we were worried about was that he hadn’t had a lot of game time. The more I looked at him, the more I thought he was ready.
He really was terrific today”.
Exactly how much Spurs were fooled by our manager’s misdirection and exactly what plans they would have put in place to deal with Gabriel Obertan….the big story of course is how Ben Arfa has clearly hit the ground running.
There had to be worries after France’s farcical Euros campaign and then the player’s lack of pitch action pre-season which was a direct result of his involvement with France, both in getting extra time off by Newcastle because of that tournament and then attending the subsequent disciplinary hearing. That hearing meaning he missed the two matches in Portugal.
Some of those runs against Spurs saw him at his jinking best and quickly saw the two Spurs defensive midfielders constrained due to early bookings.
As well as the action away from goal the great thing about the player is he also does it in and around the box, I can see Newcastle winning a far healthier share of penalties this season and we might just have found our new regular penalty taker.
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The following five matches have already been confirmed as televised live, with no doubt many more to follow.
Chelsea (A) – Saturday, 25th August but also moved to a 5.30pm kick-off (ESPN)
Everton (A) – Monday 17th September 8pm (was Sat 15th Sept) (SKY)
Manchester United (H) – Sunday 7th October 4pm (was Sat 6th Oct) (SKY)
Mackems (A) – Sunday 21st October 1.30pm (was Sat 20th Oct) (SKY)
Liverpool (A) – Sunday 4th November 4pm (was Sat 3rd Nov) (SKY)
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