Hatem Ben Arfa

By Dan King - Newcastle United Club Reporter

A week which began with a last-gasp win over Stoke and peaked with a dramatic Europa League win over Anzhi Makhachkala has been punctuated with the news that Hatem Ben Arfa's season is likely to be over.

The Frenchman suffered a hamstring injury against Maritimo in November and despite comebacks against Fulham in December and Anzhi Makhachkala, the problem has refused to go away.

That means he is likely to require surgery which would sideline him for the remainder of the campaign - one which started so brightly for him with a goal on the opening day of the season but has been largely interrupted by injury.

However, Alan Pardew has revealed that the groin strain which forced Yohan Cabaye off against Anzhi on Thursday night does not appear to be a serious one and the midfielder could yet figure against Wigan at the weekend.

Cabaye told nufc.co.uk shortly after the game that he didn't think it was a "bad injury" and the Magpies manager confirmed: "Cabaye is good news, I think.

"I think he has a half-chance for Sunday. We have the internationals next week for France so he'll need to be available for Sunday to get there and I'm sure he wants to.

"On Hatem, the news is not so good. Looking at him, I think he's going to need an operation on his hamstring and it'll probably leave him missing for the rest of the year.

"So we've had to absorb that in all the good news that we've had."

Pardew is now resigned to being without Ben Arfa until pre-season and admitted: "I think that's the priority for him now because he's been a huge miss for us.

"He gives us that X factor. In a game like last night, where he could just open the door for us, we haven't got that luxury.

"Unfortunately for Hatem, that's the news he didn't want to hear but as far as we're concerned the team has responded well in his absence and hopefully we do that until the end of the year."