Joey Barton: Released without charge
Not three words often associated with Mr Joey Barton, but the Newcastle United midfielder is now set to become the former Newcastle United midfielder after being told that he is “free to go” from St James Park.
August 2nd, 2011
Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley is used to selling off loud, vulgar merchandise at rock-bottom prices and it seems like he’s doing that again, with Newcastle announcing that they will be placing Barton on eBay with no reserve (or whatever the Premier League equivalent of the ‘available on a free transfer’ list is).
Newcastle remained fairly coy in their assessment of the situation, with a statement that would have been more insightful had it said “move along now, nothing to see here”, but the smart money is on Newcastle getting a little bit ticked off with Barton’s tweeting in recent weeks.
After previously ranting about the sale of Kevin Nolan to West Ham earlier in the summer, in which he announced that he and José Enrique “would be next”, Barton declared yesterday that he would be tweeting an announcement that afternoon. The Newcastle press office beat him to the punch however, announcing that Barton may as well go and stand on the platform at Newcastle Central and wait for the first train to Kings Cross, where Harry Redknapp will probably be waiting with a Biro and a Tottenham contract.
Barton went ahead and tweeted his side of the story, claiming in suspiciously eloquent fashion: “Somewhere in those high echelons of NUFC, they have decided, I am persona non grata. I am on a free but the honour of wearing those B+W stripes, surpasses that. One day the board might realise, what the shirt signifies. HONOUR and PRIDE. Thanks for your continued support……….. #toonarmy.”
It’s actually hard not to feel a degree of sympathy for Barton on this one. OK, take the stud marks currently on Dickson Etuhu’s right thigh out of the equation, the former Man City troublemaker has actually managed to keep his nose clean in Newcastle and even worked his way into contention for international caps. A cursory look at the betting shows Spurs, Arsenal and Man Utd amongst the favourites for his signature, showing how much he has managed to re-establish is on-field reputation.
And what for Mike Ashley? Well, we’re hoping he stays at Newcastle United for the foreseeable. After all, this blog needs to get its material from somewhere.