The Magpies' manager has compared the Frenchman to Liverpool's star striker ahead of Sunday's clash with Stoke, believing him capable of becoming one of the eliteNewcastle manager Alan Pardew has lavished praise upon Hatem Ben Arfa, heralding the Frenchman as the Magpies' answer to Luis Suarez and stating his belief that the midfielder can become one of the "best players in the world".
Ben Arfa made his return from a torn hamstring on Thursday as he featured in the 0-0 draw against Anzhi Makhachkala, his first appearance since December.
Pardew is hopeful that the former Marseille man can feature in Sunday's clash with Stoke and was eager to extol the midfielder's virtues as he lauded his ability to create something out of nothing.
"He's a massive player at this level. For us, he's our Suarez," Pardew told the club's official website.
"He's that different player, someone who in a tight game can create something out of nothing, and it would be great if we could have him available tomorrow for the last 30 minutes
"He can play anywhere in an offensive situation. I wouldn't want to play him at centre-half but everywhere else, he can play. He's a fantastic player - tremendous technique and a great mentality to be one of the best players in the world."
|A RETURNING FORCE|
|11/5||BetVictor offer 11/5 on Ben Arfa scoring at any time against Stoke on Sunday|
"We've got a little worry about Hatem, whether we can introduce him into this game. He's a little bit stiff today still," he continued.
"He was a real problem for Stoke last year and hopefully he'll be available to me. We'll have to wait and see tomorrow."