Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Ben Arfa hails father figure Puel

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 3 Mar 2016

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Hatem Ben Arfa has credited Nice coach Claude Puel for reinvigorating his career.

The 28-year-old has put a turbulent few years behind him to help fire Nice towards an unlikely European push, Ben Arfa netting 11 times in 24 top-flight appearances.

After struggling for consistency in the Premier League with Newcastle United and Hull City, Ben Arfa feels at home at the Allianz Riviera and has been rewarded with a France recall by Didier Deschamps with Euro 2016 on home soil on the horizon.

“I’m playing in an environment that is allowing me to express myself so I’m very happy here in Nice,” he told beIN Sports. “I can enjoy myself here every weekend thanks to my team-mates, the coach and the president.

“My relationship with Claude Puel is like that of a father and son, in the sense that he wants to accompany me and wants me to progress.

“And it works because his message seems to be getting through. I’m very happy to have met Claude Puel, he has helped my career get back on the right track so I’m really very happy and grateful.

“My career path has been a rollercoaster ride, I have struggled to find stability. It has been hard. Big things were expected of me from a very young age and I didn’t live up to that! 

“Today I’m getting back to a good level and I’m not finished yet. I know how I work, I know I am still getting better and I don’t see that stopping.”

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