Hatem Ben Arfa, the vastly talented French winger, has been, for most parts of his career, a case of ‘what could have been’. Liverpool and AC Milan, however, look set to duel for his signature over the summer transfer window after recent eye-catching performances.
According to French media RMC, Liverpool and Milan appear to be the front runners to snap up Hatem Ben Arfa, who will be a free agent in June. The 29 year old winger, whose career has been tarnished by injuries, off field problems, training ground feuds and scuffles with teammates, could be on his way back to England.
A no-risk move
Ben Arfa has been exceptionally good this season, helping Nice to a fourth place on the Ligue 1 table while scoring 16 goals this season. His dribbling, pace and trickery have also been eye-catching. Milan, who are notorious for snapping up free agents, will have very little to lose should they decide to pursue him.
With Menez likely to leave at the end of the current campaign, it is only fitting that they replace him with his countryman. Liverpool, like Milan, would also want to add an attacking dimension to their team and since the player would come without the need for a transfer fee, they have nothing to lose.
However, Ben Arfa’s past has been marred by dressing room squabbles. It was widely reported that Ben Arfa had a falling out with his then Lyon teammate Karim Benzema, with the former discontent at being overshadowed by the latter. Later in the season, he had a training session fight with defender Sebastien Squillaci which led to him being sold to Marseille.
At the age of 29, it is doubtful if he will get any more chances at big clubs. With Atletico and PSG also said to be monitoring his development, Milan and Liverpool are perhaps his most suitable destinations where he could get a chance to kick start his career once more. Jurgen Klopp, however, would take a strict no-nonsense approach with him. Milan, on the other hand, are uncertain who will be in charge of the bench next season.