Hatem Ben Arfa set to return for Newcastle United

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HATEM Ben Arfa has been pencilled in for an April comeback for Newcastle United, writes MILES STARFORTH.

The winger has been out since September when he suffered a double leg break away to Manchester City.

Ben Arfa, in Tunisia with his family, is due to return to Tyneside next month.

And manager Alan Pardew’s hopeful the winger will be fit to return against Wolverhampton Wanderers on April 2.

“You’d like to think he’s got every chance of playing against Wolves,” Pardew said. “The Stoke game’s probably too soon for him.

“I may look at Wolves. He’ll not be toned up, as he has been out for so long. He’s running, but he’s a good month away.”

Meanwhile, Pardew is looking forward to a return to St James’s Park for the first time since the 4-4 epic against Arsenal earlier this month.

The Magpies’ boss has been lifted by the four points picked up on away trips to Blackburn and Birmingham.

And the 49-year-old senses an opportunity for his players over the final weeks and months of a gruelling Premier League campaign, with Newcastle out for revenge against Saturday’s visitors Bolton, following a 5-1 away drubbing in November.

“The stadium could be very buoyant and maybe for the first time since I took over,” said Pardew. “It’s basically all about the game with Bolton, and nothing else.

“We’ve had such tough games at home in recent times. We’ve had Arsenal, Man City and Liverpool in my home games, but this is just as tough.

“Bolton absolutely smashed us last time out. They have monster confidence, and have won four out of the last five, with four clean sheets in that time.

“It’s a proper game. It’s way above the level of Blackburn and Birmingham, with all due respect to them.”