The Magpies will bring down the curtain on a desperately disappointing campaign on Sunday when Arsenal visit St James' Park for a final-day fixture which might have been far more significant for the home side had they not managed to secure their Barclays Premier League status with last weekend's 2-1 victory at relegated QPR.
They could yet finish as high as 10th if they beat the Gunners, who themselves need to win if they are to ensure a Champions League qualification berth, although that would only mask the issues which have prevented them from repeating last season's heroics.
However, Ben Arfa believes better luck with injuries and the chance for the club's January signings to be fully assimilated into the squad during pre-season will make for a much stronger showing next time around.
He told the Chronicle: "When you look at the individual players we already have, there are some fantastic talented players on that list.
"This season, we haven't been able to play together a lot. We have had a few injuries. A few new players also came in during January and needed some time.
"But when we are all together next season, we can really do well. Then, we can go again and I think we can have a season like we did last season. Of that, I'm sure."