Ben Arfa boost for Newcastle

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew has revealed Hatem Ben Arfa could return from injury before the end of the season.

Last Updated: 30/03/13 at 14:27 Post Comment

Hatem Ben Arfa: Could return before the end of the season

Hatem Ben Arfa: Could return before the end of the season

After 12 weeks out, the Frenchman returned to action earlier this month in the first leg of United's Europa League last-16 tie with Russian side Anzhi Makhachkala, but lasted only 64 minutes after being forced off with a hamstring injury.

The former Marseille winger was then ruled out for the rest of the season, but having returned to France to work on his fitness, Pardew has revealed he may be back to action sooner than planned.

Speaking to the Newcastle Chronicle, Pardew said: "We're getting more optimistic he could be involved again before the end of the season."

Pardew has previously insisted he will not take any risks with Ben Arfa but it would be a major boost for Newcastle if he can return for the run-in as he is a player who the manager feels brings a different dimension to the team.

"He's a massive player at this level. He's our Suarez - he's that different player, someone who in a tight game can create something out of nothing," Pardew said last month.

"He's a fantastic player, tremendous technique and a great mentality to be one of the best players in the world.

"That's what he wants to be. That's his target and all I am trying to do is drive him towards that goal."

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G

ood lord that's got me unnecessarily excited. Damn you Storey. Cut to Liverpool being crushed under the wheels of Sparky's Stoke Machine and Firmino brought off the bench to no effect. It's the hope that kills you.

suarez_blind
Roberto Firmino: Steel To Complement The Silk

N

o Schweini? Have to admit that I did a little sex wee when we signed him and I can't wait to see him in action!!!

spence
F365's Top Ten Players We Can't Wait To Watch

I

think he'll do quite well. My only reservation would be Kagawa, who had similar stats to Firmino in the bundesliga before he came, but time will tell.

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Roberto Firmino: Steel To Complement The Silk

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