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Ben Arfa ready for 'big week'

Hatem Ben Arfa knows Newcastle United are facing a 'big week' as they try to keep on the heels of the UEFA Champions League places.

Last Updated: 06/11/12 at 17:33 Post Comment   

Hatem Ben Arfa: Newcastle are preparing to face Bruges and West Ham United

Hatem Ben Arfa: Newcastle are preparing to face Bruges and West Ham United

After a surprise fifth-placed Premier League finish last season, Alan Pardew's club have set the ambition of breaking into the top four in the current campaign.

Sunday's draw at Liverpool leaves them three points behind in-form Everton, who occupy fourth spot, and Newcastle do not want that gap to get any bigger.

Pardew's side have won only one of their last five league games and they are also wrestling with the fixture congestion of participating in the Europa League.

And ahead of games against Bruges and West Ham United, Ben Arfa knows it is a critical point in the season, as he told the Chronicle: "We have a big week ahead.

"First Bruges and then West Ham and we have to win both. If we win the next few games in the Premier League, we will move up the table.

"There is West Ham first and then Swansea. I think the next five games are very important."

Newcastle will have to cope in the Premier League without suspended captain Fabricio Coloccini for three matches after his reckless red card at Liverpool.

Ben Arfa said: "It was the only bad part of the day. We have lost Colo' and he is very important for us. It was the worst experience of the day to lose him.

"I did not see the tackle. Sometimes it is about tension in the game. Maybe that is what happened."

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I

may well get slated by other United fans for this, but out of the three contenders, I'd far prefer Liverpool to win the title. Yes some elements of their fanbase can be a bit OTT, yes they're our biggest rivals and yes it will make our poor season feel even more like the end of an era (Fergie's gone, Liverpool are back on top). However I just have to applaud Brendan Rodgers and the way he's turned Liverpool around in just a couple of seasons. It...

Mike_Christie
Please Stop Telling Us What To Think

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ooray! We are all excited now, we beat a very mediocre team! With all due respect to WHU supporters, not winning that game shouldn't even be a consideration. This is the problem, there is no winning mentality at the Emirates - we're all congratulating ourselves beating a team that we have a winning record against.

TheWhiz
Wenger hails important win

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s this meant to be an aspiration for United supporters? Moyes mediocrity strikes again. I see the Bayern boys don't want to sign for him, and his reputation amongst the senior European coaches make other key signings unlikely.

redbornandbred
De Gea's Europa League target

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