Six Goal Defeat Could Help Push Ben Arfa Move To Liverpool
Hatem Ben Arfa is an extremely talented footballer, of that there is no doubt whatsoever.
He has been praised widely for his ability and yet there will be those on Tyneside who would gladly accept the money that Liverpool are set to offer Newcastle for the 26 year old left winger.
The son of former Tunisian international Kamel Ben Arfa he was destined for success. Indeed when he was only 15 years old he was already seen as a prodigy. Before his 18th birthday Ben Arfa made his Champions League debut against Manchester United for Lyon. Five years ago amidst interest from the likes of Spanish giants Real Madrid and 20 time title winners Manchester United. Arfa signed for Marseille.
After being an integral part of Marseille’s Ligue 1 winning team the Frenchmen secured his position in the hearts of the Toon Army with a wonderful goal on his debut against Everton. However, an eight month injury from a horror-show challenge from Nigel De Jong effectively ended his involvement for that season. Nevertheless, praised was heaped upon the fans’ favourite after an equalizing goal against Blackburn rovers that BBC sport described as “magical”. A “moment of genius” against Bolton Wanders on Easter Monday 2011 cemented his position.
A promising start to this, season including a 25 yard wonder goal against Aston Villa, was once again affected by injury. Other than the European adventure, this season has been hugely disappointing after the euphoria of last year. Whilst there was never a belief that last season’s 5th place finish could be repeated, with three games left Alan Pardew’s comments that Newcastle were safe after victory over Stoke look naïve at best.
Abysmal does not seem a strong enough criticism of the home side’s performance against a Liverpool side who were without their star striker Luis Suarez, after what many see as excessive punishment of a player who has come to resemble the pantomime villain.
In truth, Ben Arfa could have done little to affect the game such which was more reminiscent of England’s tie against San Marino than any game in the premier league.
So should Ben Arfa choose to go to Liverpool he will not be able to look forward to European football but what he will be assured of is that Anfield will not be the scene of a relegation fight which Newcastle certainly are in now. Having conceded 9 goals in their last two games, including the worst home defeat since 1925 and an embarrassing defeat against their arch rivals, has set pulses on Tyneside sky rocketing.
Alan Pardew’s comparison of Ben Arfa to Luis Suarez is both an insult and a compliment.
An insult in that he does not provide remotely the same headache that the controversial Uruguayan does to Brendan Rodgers.
However, Pardew also stated “It’s a bit like taking Suarez out of Liverpool. Hatem is a special player who can create anything”. But the problem for Newcastle is that Suarez was taken out of Liverpool and yet they had no answer. Woeful defending, appalling tactics and a lack of coherence contributed to a mauling.
The immediate future does not look good for Newcastle. For Ben Arfa however, today’s match could be the beginning of the end at The Toon.
Arsenal v Manchester United
Sunday 28th April, Kick off 4pm
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