Newcastle 1 Fulham 0: Hatem Ben Arfa delighted to put run to bed
Newcastle 1 Fulham 0: Hatem Ben Arfa reveals his delight after scoring the winner against the Cottagers on Saturday
Hatem Ben Arfa could not hide his delight after scoring Newcastle United’s first Premier League goal of the season as the Magpies beat Fulham on Saturday.
After a goalless first half against the west Londoners at St James’ Park, Ben Arfa cut in from the right and fired an unstoppable left-footed strike past helpless Fulham goalkeeper David Stockdale in the 68th minute to seal the win.
The France international’s goal helped Alan Pardew’s men notch up their first Premier League win of the new season – and the 26-year-old admits he and his team-mates would have lost sleep if they had failed to find the net for the third straight league game.
“It was a good goal,” Ben Arfa told Sky Sports. “I was trying all second half to score because we needed the win today. I was trying a lot of shots. I’m not sure how but I just hit it and I scored so I’m very happy.
“If we didn’t score today we wouldn’t have been able to sleep tonight. We’ve been trying and trying, and today we finally got the goal.
“We’re very happy today. If we hadn’t won or scored today we would have had two very bad weeks.”
Meanwhile, Fulham boss Martin Jol felt that his side were unlucky not to have taken something from the game.
“I really thought we should have finished them off, our midfield was good but up front we should have taken advantage – that is what we did against Sunderland,” Jol said.
“We played with two front players and we had [Dimitar] Berbatov dropping and he was pulling the strings and we should have done better.
“But to be fair they put a lot of crosses in and we can’t afford that but I think if we had scored we would have got more room up-front from that.”