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Pardew's Ben Arfa admission

Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew has admitted that Hatem Ben Arfa is playing through the pain barrier in a bid to aid the club's survival bid.

Last Updated: 07/05/13 at 12:06 Post Comment

Hatem Ben Arfa: Playing through pain barrier with hamstring injury

Hatem Ben Arfa: Playing through pain barrier with hamstring injury

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Pardew took a gamble on Ben Arfa's fitness by starting him in last weekend's goalless draw at West Ham.

Ben Arfa has been blighted with hamstring problems this season which have restricted him to just 20 appearances in all competitions.

Pardew is prepared to take a risk on Ben Arfa's fitness as he feels the Frenchman can make the difference in their battle to avoid relegation.

"Ben Arfa has been struggling. This hamstring has a slight weakness in there and it won't even be strong I don't think for six, seven weeks," noted Pardew.

"We got a great level of fitness out of him in terms of that particular problem. He was terrific at West Ham, and he's a match winner.

"We've been bringing him on in the second half but started him at the weekend and we missed him when we took him off. We missed that little thrust.

"I think for Hatem another week's work will get him closer. Goal scoring is what wins games, we've got to improve that area for next week, including with Hatem."

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e'll be fine, no problem. If they do get relegated, he's definitely going to ask how anyone could ever have thought that Villa were going to be fine given their problems before he came.

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toke though. Hmn. I don't think it was defending that made people dislike Stoke so much as the out and out cheating/nastiness they regularly displayed. That, and they kept buying the odd flair player and then ruining them (Oh! Tuncay, what were you thinking?).

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Being Defensive About Being Defensive...

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ell that really inspires me with confidence. No point in training, deciding on a coherent formation, or playing players in their best positions, let's just hope we get lucky.

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Van Gaal: Luck is key

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