One of the Premier League clubs to have had a miserable January transfer window, is undoubtedly Newcastle United. As bad news goes for football fans, the sale of your star man, is some of the worst you can get and Yohan Cabaye certainly was that for the Magpies.
In terms of damage to the team it’s up there with Arsenal selling Van Persie to United or Liverpool losing Xabi Alonso to Real Madrid – these integral players at the height of their prowess were suddenly shipped off to pastures new, and they left a void behind them.
For Newcastle that damage has had an instant impact on their results, with just 1 win in 8 since the beginning of January, including a humiliating 3-0 loss in the Tyneside derby and, with the pressure mounting on Alan Pardew, more bad news – their other stand-out attacking midfielder Hatem Ben Arfa, is reportedly up for sale, suggest The Guardian, with Inter Milan in pole position for his signature.
Whilst Ben Arfa’s performance level has dropped off a little compared with his impressive form in his first full season at St. James’s Park in 2011/12, and he does appear to cut an uninspired figure at times, the 26 year old winger is, on his day, still the most exciting and attack minded midfielder Newcastle now have.
With 3 goals and a total of 25 chances created for other team-mates so far this campaign, what he brings to Newcastle’s attack is flair and skill; the ability to run past players with his impressive pace and cut in on his favoured left foot to find a team-mate or shoot. Without this creative spark provided by the French winger, it is difficult to see how Newcastle are to progress as a team.