Alan Pardew hopes for Hatem Ben Arfa improvement

Newcastle's Hatem Ben Arfa and Cardiff's Aron Gunnarsson in action during their FA Cup third round match on January 4, 2013
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Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew insists that the time has come for midfielder Hatem Ben Arfa to start producing his best form for the club.

Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew has insisted that he does not want to "heap too much pressure" on midfielder Hatem Ben Arfa.

The onus has been placed on Ben Arfa to return to form after the departure of Yohan Cabaye, and while Pardew believes that the best is yet to come from the French international, he does not want to place too much responsibility on the playmaker.

The 52-year-old told the Northern Echo: "Hatem has amazing technical ability. He still needs to put together the whole package, but if you were to say that his time is upon him now, you wouldn't be far wrong.

"Sometimes, I think people look at him and assume he's super confident because of the way that he plays. They think he has cast-iron confidence about what he can do, but I don't think he actually is like that."

"I think that he does worry about the game and his responsibilities. That has to be taken into account, and I don't want to heap too much pressure on him."

The 26-year-old has scored three times in 22 appearances for the Magpies this campaign.

Referee Chris Foy shows Loic Remy of Newcastle United a red card during the Barclays Premier League match between Norwich City and Newcastle United at Carrow Road on January 28, 2014
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