• Premier League

Ben Arfa wants to stay at Newcastle

ESPN staff
May 1, 2014
Hatem Ben Arfa has been hampered by injuries this season © Getty Images

Hatem Ben Arfa is desperate to remain with Newcastle even if he continues to remain out of favour with manager Alan Pardew.

The French playmaker has proved on numerous occasions in the past that he is capable of swinging a game in Newcastle's favour, but injuries and a lack of fitness have combined to keep him on the fringes of the side this season.

Ben Arfa admitted he had a frank exchange with Pardew following the 4-0 humbling by Manchester United on April 5, while it has been reported he was made to train with the reserves last week and was left out of the squad altogether for the 3-0 defeat at Arsenal on Monday.

The former Lyon and Marseille man wants to showcase his talents once more, but would be keen on remaining on Tyneside even if he is not playing.

"I don't know why I'm not playing,'' Ben Arfa told the Daily Mail.

"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. I enjoy training. I just want to play. I'm fit.

"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.''

Newcastle could do with having Ben Arfa back to his best having lost their last six Premier League matches, with the mood among fans turning ever more sour towards Pardew.

"We have lost too many times, 3-0, 4-0, 3-0. It is hard when you love the supporters, it is hard to lose every time like that,'' Ben Arfa said.

"On the pitch I can offer my flair and my creativity. I try every time to do something. I think I can give a lot for the club.''

The Chronicle Live reported Ben Arfa had been forced to train with the reserves on Thursday after allegedly breaching club rules by holding his own interview on Wednesday.

Pardew said on the matter: "They are his comments but my comments are the same as what I said before. I will pick the team on merit."

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