Alan Pardew expects positive Hatem Ben Arfa response

Pardew expects positive Ben Arfa response
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Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew backs Hatem Ben Arfa to rediscover top form after being dropped from the starting XI two weeks ago.

Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew has admitted that he found it difficult to drop Hatem Ben Arfa two weeks ago, but believes that the playmaker may benefit from the decision in the long run.

Ben Arfa was left out of Newcastle's 2-1 win over Cardiff City after an indifferent start to the season.

Pardew revealed that Ben Arfa has taken some criticism of recent displays on board and trained well during the international break, backing the midfielder to respond with positive performances when he returns to the starting XI.

He told the Daily Mail: "It's always difficult to leave out players you like. I love Hatem. I want him to play as well and as consistently as he possibly can.

"But sometimes you do need to say players, 'Come out, have a look at it, see what you did well and what you didn't do so well, and analyse yourself'. I think he's done that.

"He's trained really well in the last 10 days and really taken what we've said to him on board. I'd like to think that when he goes back in the team next time, whenever that is, he'll really be at his best. I hope so."

The Magpies boss now faces a selection dilemma over whether to recall Ben Arfa this afternoon, when Newcastle resume their Premier League campaign at home to Liverpool.

Newcastle players congratulate Hatem Ben Arfa following his goal against Aston Villa on September 14, 2013
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