Hatem Ben Arfa has been pencilled in to make his return to competitive action against Blackburn on September 24th after recent scans revealed that there are no problems with his injury.
Ben Arfa has been out of action since the Kansas game in pre-season after being on the end of a robust challenge from Roger Espinoza. The problem was that it was an injury to the same leg that was broken in two places by Nigel de Jong nearly a year ago which is a cause for concern. Had his old injury been affected by this new one?
Apparently not according to Alan Pardew who has confirmed that this latest injury has not had an impact on his leg break.
“We’ve had some positive news about Hatem – the second consultation has come back the same as the first – the break is fine and it’s a ligament problem,” said Pardew. “I still haven’t seen him play a competitive game yet in my time here.”
It’s good news in truth and puts my mind at rest and I’d guess it would help raise the confidence of the player knowing that he can come through a rough challenge and not actually have his leg snapped in the process!
I keep hearing people say how so much hope and expectation is being out on the shoulders of Hatem Ben Arfa. I agree that there is a lot of hope, but I’m unsure where the expectation bit has come from. I mean at the end of the day we’ve been without him for so long and coped.
I do think there is a sense of excitement around the return of Hatem Ben Arfa though. People aren’t silly and they know he won’t be able to reproduce the form he showed against Everton week in and week out, but they also know that he is capable of something special at any time.
It’s not expectation, it’s excitement.
I can’t wait to see him back in action and hope that he can remain injury free for a good while. Unfortunately though he is one of those players who will be a target for the hatchet men of the league who don’t know how to cope with skill, and I’m looking at the likes of Stoke and Blackburn when I say that.
So only a month to go until we see Hatem again, and no further damage to what was an horrific injury. I’d class that as good news.
Now we just have to try and fit him in somewhere…