Hatem Ben Arfa has hit back at Newcastle manager Alan Pardew for being left with the reserve squad, despite the fact that he is fit, and raring to go.
The Magpies are on a bad run of form and could really use the services of the French playmaker.
Ben Arfa told reporters: "Yeah, it was very difficult. I was at home watching on TV" (Defeat to Arsenal) he says. "I feel sad and frustrated, but not angry. I want to help my team and I can’t. It hurts a lot."
The former Lyon prodigy feels that he could use his flair and creativity to drive the Magpies out of a bad spell of six consecutive defeats, a new record for "The Toon" since 1987.
"I don’t know why I’m not playing. You have to ask the manager. After the (4-0) defeat against Manchester United, we had a strong exchange of words, but that is it. He doesn’t want me to play. I respect it. If he wants, I will play. I’m here for the club" he said.
Ben Arfa has stated his loyalty to the Geordies despite the fact that the Club looks set to try and offload him in the summer transfer window. The Frenchman has also decided against evoking a clause that could see him terminate his contract end-season, with the intentions of moving else where for more regular and maybe even European football.
He said,:"If the manager says to me he doesn’t believe in me for next season, I want to stay, but if the chairman wants to sell me I have to go. I want to stay here even if the manager doesn’t believe in me because I will show him I can play here."
Alan Pardew has come under scrutiny from the media for a bad run of results from the turn of the year. Pardew has gone from winning the Premier League Manager of the Month accolade last November to some local papers making calls for him to be sacked with their published headline of "P45 due".
His recent altercation with David Meyler, which resulted in a seven-match ban on top of a fine, displayed a lack of professionalism from a manager with his experience.
Pardew will be hoping to make the most of his next game against "relegation threatened" Cardiff City. The Magpies will be hoping to accomplish a finish within the top half of the table, and their good run of form in the earlier half of the season will help them to see out that objective. "We have been in the top 10 all year – and we intend to stay there" said Pardew.
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