Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Pardew delighted with Ben Arfa

Hatem Ben Arfa

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew once again urged France boss Laurent Blanc to take a look at Hatem Ben Arfa as he prepares to pick his Euro 2012 squad.

The winger turned in another fleet-footed display to help the Magpies to a 2-0 Barclays Premier League victory over Liverpool and leave his manager purring.

Pardew, who nursed the Frenchman back from an horrendous double leg fracture, said: "When you have a player who has a special talent, sometimes they look at you as a manager and they want to play. He wasn't fit. He had worked really, really hard, but he wasn't actually match-fit."

He added: "He was fit, but not match-fit, not really sure of how we played and in the Premier League, the transition of play, where he should be and where he shouldn't be.

"He has taken on board and he has listened to me and he has listened to my staff and he has been very, very diligent.

"That's why nothing would give me more pleasure than for him to make the French squad, and I think he can.

"He has got some individual ability that I would be very surprised if France has that in the squad in terms of what he can do to a team.

"Even if he was to be taken as an impact player, he's got a great opportunity and he is in great shape."