Playing in last night’s Coupe de la Ligue quarter-finals, Hatem Ben Arfa was back to his brilliant best with a majestic assist – only for his shocking spot kick to cost Rennes dearly in the penalty shoot out.
Ben Arfa in’t usually far from the headlines, but he is the type of creative player we desperately need at the moment – and it appears he is up to his old tricks back in France with new club Rennes.
Here’s his brilliant first half assist – a goal which gave Rennes a half-time lead:
We certainly don’t have anybody in the squad who has the quality to unlock a defence like Ben Arfa can and that clip brings back memories of those wonderful solo moments against Bolton and Blackburn.
His good work was soon undone, however, with this woeful penalty contributing to their downfall in the shoot out:
The subsequent penalty miss is also Ben Arfa at his infuriating best too – it’s this lack of consistency that has held him back from being a top player at one of the top clubs. He appeared to finally have got his big chance at PSG but poor fitness and attitude problems appeared to re-surface again, something that has dogged the mercurial Frenchman his whole career.
After all, fans may forget he went on strike to move to Newcastle in the first place and after us, was at one point not able to get into the Hull City XI.
But, Newcastle fans will always hold fond memories of Ben Arfa as he is rightly one of the most talented players we have had in the last decade. We can look back at some brilliant Ben Arfa goals in black and white with fondness, as while Mike Ashley is here, we are unlikely to have such a talented player on the books.
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