Oh, Joey Barton. His penchant for controversy has long eclipsed his undoubted ability as a footballer. And now, it’s cost him the chance to play on Europe’s biggest club stage.
Barton had already been informed he would be allowed to leave Newcastle United on a free transfer when he played on the opening day of the season against one of the clubs he had been talking to, Arsenal.
An incident where Barton dragged Arsenal forward Gervinho from the ground lead to a scuffle that ended with Barton seeing yellow and Gervinho being sent off ended any interest from Arsenal’s end.
Barton said of the failed deal:
If I hadn’t played against Arsenal on the first day, I may have signed for them.
The Gervinho incident happened and there’s nothing I can do about it now. If it happened again, I’d like to think I’d deal with it differently.
Barton instead completed a move to a different London side. Newly promoted QPR.
Full story: Caught Offside