Hatem Ben Arfa is an enigma, wrapped up in a conundrum - to some Newcastle United fans that is, not to me though. He doesn't fool me. Ever since he first broke on to the scene as an enigmatic teenage wunderkind, there has been many who followed his career with great interest.
As Newcastle United head into yet another irrelevant fixture (for NUFC at least) I find myself posing a question that has been on my mind and lips ever since our grossly premature cup exit at the hands of Cardiff in early January - what is the point?
With passion being a selling point for the English Premiership, dominating the stands and the changing rooms and virtually seeping through the crevices of the national game, it might be helpful for us to look at ourselves in the mirror before we start throwing our stones around in indignation.
After many countries played out their National Events during last week's short International hiatus it was back to action in the Premier Squash League, British squash's foremost league competition.
While these results are not a conclusive representation of the feelings of Newcastle United fans, it can be taken as a cross-section of the Newcastle United support and it must be said that the last six months have not been kind to Mr Ashley, as the results show.
The Newcastle United team basically picks itself when we are at full strength. That isn't because we have a set of 11 players who are on such red-hot form that picking anything other than those 11 players would be sheer madness. No, it is because our bench/fringe players are so lacking in quality that Pardew has no other choice but to pick the same players week in week out...
Prior to last weekend, the last time Newcastle United won a league game at Old Trafford, the mobile phone had yet to be invented, the Sydney Opera Hou...
I am no longer just a football fan. What Mike Ashley has successfully achieved is to make pseudo-accountants out of many Newcastle United fans. Instead of pointing to silverware as a barometer of progress and success.
Like most Newcastle United fans I was ecstatic with not only the three points against Chelsea, but also in the manner in which we got them. Yes Chelsea had the better of the first half, but we more than proved ourselves worthy winners with our fantastic display in the second half...
Ashley quite obviously thinks he can remove freedom of information from the equation and Newcastle United fans will take this lying down too. I won't focus on the act of banning newspapers too much. Quite clearly Ashley is feeling the pressure and is reacting in the only way he knows how to - badly.
The club we are supporting right now is not Newcastle United. It is a pale imitation of the great club it once was. Until Mike Ashley leaves and takes Kinnear and Pardew we will not see this great club back to where it belongs; showing ambition, playing good football, and exciting the fans with the (ever heartbreaking) possibility that this year will be our year in the cups.
It would appear that this weekend's fixture against Cardiff is taking on added significance as it is surely one of the few opportunities Newcastle United will have in the next five matches to pick up maximum points.
As a Newcastle fan, I'm quite used to hearing ridiculous things - usually from our own supporters. But this one really tops the lot. Sports Direct News (yes that's actually a thing) has claimed that "low-level" talks have taken place between the Magpies and Wayne Rooney's agent, although an official offer is yet to be lodged. Go figure.
It's not good enough, though, for these clubs simply survive. Despite both having had relegations in their recent history, they should be well-established Premier League clubs. They now need to make sure this is a one-off, and the mistakes of this season are not repeated.
It is only two games and further work must be done to salvage the season, but big strides have been taken and fears of relegation are residing. These signings are a show of intent by Alan Pardew and his scouting team, who have once again shown their qualities with some astute signings.
It should not be overlooked that this "wee club from the North East" boasts the eighth highest trophy total in English football and third biggest stadium (excluding Wembley). Newcastle might not be as big as they once were, but they are not as small as their manager is currently delivering.