Newcastle fans here in the Tavern have become excited at the prospect of welcoming some fresh faces into their ranks, as the January transfer window approaches.
In the footballing world many players have been known to play at the highest level before fading away into the darkness, as their abilities and attitude appear to disperse into nothing.
Look no further than former Newcastle player Hatem Ben Arfa.
After joining the club from French club Marseille in 2012, the forward had a couple of outstanding seasons with the Toon Army constantly singing his praise. But as his 4th season in Tyneside edged ever closer he began to lose his way, a drop in attitude and the introduction of laziness kicked in to condemn the end of his Newcastle career.
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However, a healthy move away to French side OG Nice was the destination that really ignited the return in style for such a promising player. Having scored 17 goals in the 34 games played for the side, he was beginning to fulfil the void that has deserted him for all those wasted seasons, which finally forced a move to money-spinning Paris Saint Germain.
Since playing in the capital, the sloppy old ways have returned with him being sent completely out of the squad by manager Unai Emery and has even been linked with a move to Leicester City.
Our punters here in the Tavern all agree that on his day in the Premier League, this man managed to produce some of the most inspired pieces of magic that the league had ever seen, pulling out goals left, right and centre.
Now with an influx of cash potentially coming into St. James’ Park, here’s a look at THREE reasons as to why Rafa Benitez should hijack Claude Puels’ launch…