Hatem Ben Arfa Out Until The New Year

Laurence Griffiths

Because, of course.

In the wake of Newcastle's 6th loss in their last 7 matches, the hits just keep on coming. Struggling with a hamstring injury for much of the last month, Hatem Ben Arfa has been ruled out for the holiday program.

Ben Arfa, 25, has been struggling with a hamstring injury he sustained in the Europa League meeting with Maritimo last month.

The Frenchman made his return in the recent 2-1 loss at Fulham but he aggravated the problem and will now not be risked by Pardew until he has made a full recovery.

"There is a danger he could tear his hamstring," Pardew said. "If he did that he would be out for two or three months whereas if we do it the right way and be sensible about it, it may only be three weeks. And obviously that is the route we are going to take."

-from ESPN.co.uk

So there's that. Having the most likely outlet for creativity out for the holiday program in which Newcastle desperately need to find some points is far from ideal. Also of note in this article? Alan Pardew may in fact be the leader of the "we're playing well, just not getting results" brigade.

"They are the next two that are on the agenda at the minute. In the last four games, it's very difficult to say that we have only got three points out of those last four games.

"You can just see there's not a lot really wrong, but unfortunately we haven't got a points total that reflects the work we are putting in."

Although the performance against Manchester City (despite the 3-1 score line) may have been the most encouraging performance since say, Tottenham in the first match of the season, there has been precious little to feel good about in between and it needs to be accepted and dealt with by the team, which it is clearly not doing. So... good morning. And stuff.
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