Poles Apart: Darren Bent Catches Flak For Comparing Bruno Guimaraes to Ben Arfa

It should be common knowledge by this point – Newcastle United have won the lottery in Bruno Guimaraes.

The Brazilian midfielder arrived at St James’ Park during the winter window last season and instantly became a pivotal figure for the Magpies.

At the time, many sneered at his reported price tag of €50m, but those familiar with his spell at Lyon were well aware that Newcastle had bagged a gem.

We can wax lyrical about the 24-year-old’s abilities for hours, but to spare you the hike, here’s a neat graphic courtesy of Sky Sports.

It displays a comparison between some of the best No. 6’s in the league, and evidently, Guimaraes is leaps ahead of the competition.

Even offensive metrics such as chance creation and through balls stand out and go on to reflect the all-around nature of his game.

Guimaraes once again grabbed the headlines after netting a brace against Brentford to cap off a truly sublime performance.

Naturally, the midfielder became a topic of conversation on talkSPORT, with former Tottenham player Darren Bent and presenter Andy Goldstein both lauding the Brazilian.

Newcastle fans usually love it when their players are praised.

On this occasion, however, fans were far from pleased, and it all has to do with the unnecessary comparison drawn by Bent.

The former striker said,

‘He reminds me of Ben Arfa. They always get these types of players that are a lit bit mavericks but have got all the ability. I think the only difference between him and Ben Arfa is that he’ll be a little bit more consistent, whereas Ben Arfa would sometimes go missing.’

The Toon army on Twitter brewed up a storm upon listening to the comparison, and plenty of criticism was sent Bent’s way.

The content of these critiques were based on how differently fans perceived the 38-year-old’s comments.

Many lambasted the pundit for even drawing parallels between Ben Arfa (an explosive winger) and Guimaraes (a deep-lying midfielder).

While others picked up on his use of the word ‘maverick’, which is certainly apt for Ben Arfa, but thoroughly untrue for Bruno.

The Frenchman held a notorious reputation for indiscipline and had several public spats with players and coaches.

He wasn’t exactly the most accommodating figure on the field either, and would often dribble on to no avail, instead of combining with his teammates.

Guimaraes happens to be the polar opposite, the midfielder is a proper team player and leads by example.

Furthermore, his commitment is stellar as evidenced by how quickly he achieved fluency in English, and the same cannot be said for Ben Arfa.

While there’s certainly an air of confusion, we felt that Bent’s comparison had more to do with talent and attitude, as opposed to style of play.

And even so, the former England International got it very wrong.