Newcastle manager Sam Allardyce was delighted with Joey Barton’s contribution to an entertaining encounter, and tipped him to make a major impact at St James’ Park this season and beyond.
Let’s take a look at what Sam said following Joey’s excellent and energetic start to his Newcastle career.
After the friendly game last night Sam talked at length about Barton:
“He was very good – but that’s him just taking it easy, really.
“I think he will be a driving force for the team. As a footballer, he’s got lots and lots of talent.
“We have always known that, and now we have got him here to hopefully portray his talent at St James’ for a few years to come.
“Joey showed good passing, he had some good shots and was unlucky not to score.”
“He can be anything he wants to be as a footballer.” “He can be the very best if he wants to be.”
“He has the talent and the drive and I hope we can help him to fulfill all his potential.”
“That would be great for him and the football club.”
That’s certainly a good start for Joey but we don’t think his playing ability has ever been questioned too much â€“ it’s his explosive personality that’s caused him all the trouble during his short career.
Joey also spoke this morning to the Journal about his England career – he currently has a single cap for England.
â€œIâ€™m an Englishman and nothing makes me more proud than to play for my country. Iâ€™m very patriotic,â€ â€œIt was the pinnacle of my career representing my country.”
â€œIâ€™d love to be in the England fold but Iâ€™d much rather be successful here at club level because this is where your breadâ€™s buttered.”
This is where you earn your caps by playing well for the club so the first thing on my mind is to achieve success here.
If I do that everything else takes care of itself.â€
If Joey plays well for Newcastle there’s no reason at all why he cannot add to his England caps.
Joey has also hit out at his former Manchester City manager Stuart Pearce. Pearce blasted Barton for launching a scathing attack on his unimpressive City reign – which was quickly followed by the alleged training-ground assault on Ousmane Dabo.
“I didn’t speak to Pearce about Newcastle because we had a relationship breakdown in the end.“
“He came out and said certain things which he shouldn’t have said, whether he felt them or not.”
“There’s a lot of things I feel about him but I’ve not come out and said them and I don’t plan on doing so.”
“When you have a working relationship with someone, there are a lot of things that should be kept in-house.”
“Stuart thinks differently and he is entitled to his opinion.”
“But if everyone spoke their opinions, we would have anarchy and chaos in the world.”
We hope Joey smartens up at Newcastle and learns to be a model professional. These comments never help the situation and it’s really best not to say anything in circumstances like this. Everybody in the game â€“ not just in England – knows of Joey’s explosive personality now – and it’s between him and Sam to control this and for Joey to become the great player he can become. Sam never seems to have had doubts about Barton and was very quick to sign him once he became Newcastle manager.
We think if Joey can control his antics he can be an England player. This is a big chance for him â€“ because if he cannot do it at Newcastle under Sam Allardyce â€“ he cannot do it – and that would be a waste of a huge talent.