Monaco poised to make bid for Newcastle star Hatem Ben Arfa

GIFTED: Hatem Ben Arfa
GIFTED: Hatem Ben Arfa
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NEWCASTLE United could face a battle to keep hold of star Hatem Ben Arfa.

Reports from France say Monaco, newly promoted to Ligue 1, are splashing the cash this summer, and it would seem Ben Arfa is on their shopping list.

United boss Alan Pardew won’t want to lose the 26-year-old, who is under contract at the club until 2016.

But a big-money offer may prove too good for owner Mike Ashley and chairman Derek Llambias to turn down.

Ben Arfa, missed a lot of last season through injury, but his skilful attacking play has made him a firm favourite with fans on Tyneside.

And the United star provides the team with a real attacking threat when fully fit.

Monaco have not been put off by the player’s injury record while at United.

Ben Arfa made the move to St James’s Park from Marseille three years ago, and has appeared in just 49 top-flight matches and 56 fixtures in all competitions for Pardew’s men.

However, reports in France say Monaco are prepared to launch a £10million bid to get their man.

Should United hold out for more money, then the extra cash will not be problem for a side bankrolled by Russian billionaire owner Dmitry Rybolovlev.

Monaco have already spent big this summer, adding £60million Porto duo James Rodriguez and Joao Moutinho to their squad.

The French side are also thought to be favourites to land Atletico Madrid striker Radamel Falcao, with a reported fee of £51million already agreed.