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West Ham tempted by French free agent

Filed: Thursday, 26th July 2018
By: Staff Writer

West Ham are stepping up their interest in wide midfielder Hatem Ben Arfa, who is available on a free transfer.

The former French international, who appeared for his country on 15 occasions is available on a free having left Paris St Germain where he had spent the last two seasons (despite not playing a single game during the 2017/18 campaign).

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Ben Arfa, now 31, has enjoyed something of a controversial career. One of France's most highly-rated emerging youngsters, he began his career at Lyon before joining Marseille in 2008 - where he was fined by the club for resugin to join a pre-match warm-up and later for missing a training session.

A loan to Newcastle subsequently followed before he joined the Magpies on a permanenent basis. However his time in the North East was constantly interrupted by injury and he was sent on another season-long loan to Hull City in September 2014.

Having made his debut for Hull against West Ham in the same month, Ben Arfa made nine appearances for the Tigers before going missing in action, eventually turning up back in France.

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His disappearance led to Newcastle releasing Ben Arfa from his contract, allowing him to join Nice on a free transfer - before announcing a month later that the contract had been annulled due to a rule stating that no player may represnt more than two clubs in any one season.

Despite this he signed a contract with Nice for the following 2015/16 season and went on to spend the entire year at the club, before joining Paris on a free (once again) in July 2016.

Ben Arfa, who was also eligible to represent Tunisia chose instead to feature for France at international level.

Although he was included in the provisional 2010 World Cup squad he was omitted from the final selection - as was the case for Euro 2016. He did however represent France at the Euro 2012 championships.

* In other transfer news, West Ham are said to be considering taking Joao Mario on loan for a second successive season.

The Inter midfielder, who was also linked with Wolves earlier in the transfer window is available once again - although the Serie A side would prefer to sell the player, who is valued by his club around the 25million mark.

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   arrow   In brief - Friday's news round-up [27th Jul 2018]
   arrow   West Ham tempted by French free agent [26th Jul 2018]
   arrow   Newcastle Utd 0-0 West Ham Utd [24th Aug 2013]
   arrow   Newcastle Utd v West Ham Utd: half time report [24th Aug 2013]
   arrow   Newcastle Utd 0 West Ham Utd 1 [11th Nov 2012]

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