Creative midfielder Joey Barton is hoping to make his comeback against Everton in the game after next â€“ so he’s not too far away from playing in the first team again â€“ which has to be some good news for us – for a change – on the injury front.
The 25-year-old will begin full contact training at Newcastleâ€™s Benton training ground next week and it looks like after that it’s just Joey needing some match practice before he’s available again for selection.
Joey Barton – begins full training next Monday
Of course Joey’s metatarsal injury has taken a lot longer than the normal 6 weeks of recovery time. He injured it at Carlisle on July 21st which is a full 10 weeks ago this Saturday. So it’s going to be around double the normal recovery time once Joey is back.
Here’s what Joey told the Newcastle Journal today:
â€œWhen I finally get back is the million dollar question for me,â€ â€œIâ€™ve not been training with the boys because I canâ€™t do contact stuff, that should happen next week but I hope to be involved in the Everton game.â€ â€œThatâ€™s the target at the moment and itâ€™s obviously an exciting one for me. That has given me an aim and Iâ€™m pushing to be involved in the squad for that one.â€
â€œIâ€™ve been trying to get involved as much I can and I travel to a lot of the away games, but itâ€™s difficult not being on the pitch,â€ â€œI do as much as I can in the dressing room, but Iâ€™m desperate to get back.â€
â€œThe medical staff are slowly guiding me back in and hopefully itâ€™s going to be sooner rather than later. The longest Iâ€™ve ever spent out through injury was six weeks so this has been hard to take.
â€œInjuries are part of the game weâ€™re involved in, but itâ€™s still difficult to deal with when you get one before youâ€™ve even played a competitive game for your new club. Iâ€™m in a new environment and I wanted to put a marker down, show people what I could do, but Iâ€™ve not been able to do that so Iâ€™ve been stuck in limbo a bit.â€
We’ve certainly been impressed with Joey’s interest in attending both the first team games and the reserve team games, as he seems very determined to get fully involved at Newcastle. That has to be a good sign for supporters and management and maybe Joey is future captain material . Certainly that’s what we like to see from a captain â€“ an interest in all playing levels at the club. But yes we know â€“ he’s got to handle himself first â€“ which we all know (as does Joey) that’s his number on priority right now. But his attitude is just first class â€“ as we’ve also noticed with lots of the other players Sam has brought into Newcastle over the summer.
Joey then talked with maturity about his place in the side and he understands he will not walk straight back into the team, and that it may take him a little while to force himself back in. Don’t you just love this attitude given the history of some of our spoiled previous players?
Joey went on:
â€œHowever, Iâ€™ll bounce back strongly. Everything happens for a reason and Iâ€™ve had the chance to look at different aspects of my game and work out how Iâ€™m going to fit into this Newcastle team.â€ â€œIâ€™ll enjoy it even more when Iâ€™m playing, of course, and hopefully I can get back into the side. I think if you take the Derby game out of the equation itâ€™s been a great start to the season in the league. “
â€œEven when Iâ€™m fit again I might have to wait for my chance to get into the midfield because the players in those positions have been playing well and Iâ€™m not going to assume anything.â€ â€œI joined this club because I thought I could be successful and win trophies, I donâ€™t see any reason why that view should change from what Iâ€™ve seen so far this season.â€
â€œThere is obviously a lot of work to be done, but we are starting to get a strong squad with competition for places. That is the way to be successful, as Arsenal showed in the Carling Cup on Tuesday night.â€
Well this is the second interview from Joey in as many days and we certainly like what we’ve heard. If Joey can curb his anger tendencies and show the form he displayed during pre-season then Barton is going to be one of Sam’s many bargains over the years at Newcastle. He’s come to win things at Newcastle â€“ like Sam and the other new players â€“ and we’re sure that mission will be accomplished sooner rather than later, despite disappointments we are bound to have on the way.
With players having the attitude and skill of Joey at the club â€“ we believe success can be assured.
Comments always appreciated.