The Toon Army in the Transfer Tavern are feeling apprehensive about their club’s future following a relatively unsuccessful January transfer window last month.
Newcastle United are currently positioned in 16th place in the Premier League just 1 point clear from safety after 26 fixtures. The supporters were dearly hoping for some January acquisitions to give everybody at the club a boost in preparation for the all-important run-in, but Benitez only managed to secure a handful of loan signings following months of speculation regarding a potential record-breaking transfer.
Whether Newcastle will be under the control of Mike Ashley, Amanda Staveley, or another owner by the summer remains to be seen, but Benitez will need to make a handful of key reinforcements if The Magpies wish to cement their place in the top-flight or make another instant return from the Championship.
With that being said, Newcastle should already be looking at potential transfer targets for the summer, and one player who could be a fantastic addition to the current squad is their former player and current Paris Saint-Germain employee Hatem Ben Arfa (valued at £7.2 million by Transfermarkt).
Ben Arfa is set to become a free agent when his contract expires in the summer, and it seems extremely unlikely that he will sign an extension with the French giants before then as he appears to be surplus to requirements at the club.
Although Ben Arfa failed to consistently deliver his brilliant best form throughout his career on Tyneside between 2010 and 2015, the sporadic moments of quality he often showcased were of a level that far exceed anything Benitez currently has available with his squad.
There is no doubt that signing the French midfielder would be a risk for the club, but if he is willing to take a wage cut and pledge his commitment to Benitez, then Newcastle should seriously consider completing a shrewd piece of business by signing him on a free transfer in the summer.