To say it has been a disappointing season for Hatem Ben Arfa is an understatement, the French international has missed much of the season with a hamstring problem and despite not being fully recovered Alan Pardew has called him back into the side.
Ben Arfa made his first start for the Magpie’s in nearly 20 weeks against West Ham last weekend and in truth was probably their best player despite being taken off after 65 minutes.
Injury to Moussa Sissoko meant that Alan Pardew opted to deploy Ben Arfa in “the hole” behind Cisse and with Alan Pardew’s side fighting for their top-flight survival, he looks set to retain his starting position for the upcoming trip to QPR.
The Newcastle number 10 has picked up three goals and two assist from his limited game time this season and Alan Pardew will be hoping he can add to that as his side go in search of a much needed three points.
For fantasy manager Ben Arfa’s inclusion in that more advanced central role presents them with an interesting differential proposition and with QPR seemingly unable to stop teams from scoring he could do well at Loftus Road this weekend.
While many may worry that Ben Arfa could be benched again should Sissoko make a recovery in time for the game Pardew’s comments after the West Ham game will allay those fears as the Newcastle boss admitted his will persist with Ben Arfa despite the fact he is not fully fit.
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