Newcastle’s lawyers are looking into Joey Barton’s bail conditions to see if Joey can return to play for the club after being released from custody in Liverpool on Thursday evening.
Joey Barton – just released from jail
The Liverpool-born midfielder missed the games against Chelsea and Manchester City after being remanded to Liverpool Prison on charges of assault and affray. However, he has now been released on conditional bail until January 16, and the club is checking to see whether or not he is available to manager Sam Allardyce.
Barton has been charged with assault and affray after an incident outside a McDonald’s restaurant in his hometown of Liverpool on December 27 and will face trial at Liverpool magistrates court on Wednesday, January 16th.
Allardyce said yesterday:
“There may be a possibility, certainly not for the Stoke match, but after that, there might be the possibility.â€
“We are doing our research into that with the lawyer and making absolutely certain that there are going to be no rules or regulations set that we might be breaking if we do attempt to get Joey back into the squad, and take it from there.”
Allardyce said he would travel to Hampshire after Newcastle’s FA Cup third-round tie against Stoke City tomorrow to meet Barton at the Sporting Chance Clinic, where Barton is staying as part of the conditions of his bail, following his release from prison on Thursday.
Allardyce admitted the timing of Barton’s arrest could not have been much worse, as he fights to save his job as Newcastle manager and said he was hugely disappointed with the player’s behavior. However, Sam still seems keen to help the troubled midfielder salvage his career at the club, if he is allowed to.
Youâ€™ve got to admire Sam Allardyce for what heâ€™s doing for Joey, whatever you think of him as a manager. We thought Joey’s career would be over at the club, and it still may be, but that hasn’t stopped Sam from doing his very best for one of his players, who’s in big trouble.
Whether Joey deserves it or not (and we’re not convinced he does), youâ€™ve just got to give it to Big Sam, that heâ€™s doing his very best for Joey, in a time of need. And remember, Samâ€™s doing this at a time when he has to be very concerned about his own position at the Tyneside club. The stress on Big Sam has to be very severe right now, and coming from multiple sources and lots of nasty stuff is being thrown at Sam from the media.
We think itâ€™s just great what Big Sam is trying to do for Joey, and weâ€™re not embarrassed to say that. At the end of the day, itâ€™s all about what kind of person you are in life, and whether you have been successful professionally or not, is all rather secondary, at the end of the day.
Sam said yesterday:
“I have spoken to Joey just to find out from him and his solicitors what can and can’t be done from our point of view,”
“When we get all that information we will see how we go in terms of him starting training and when he can be selected again.â€
“I’ve only spoken to him on the phone and he has apologized. He is obviously relieved he is out of prison. From there he has got to concern himself about his case and try to sort that out now. From our point of view, we need to keep him fit to play, if and when he is available again.â€
“I’m not getting sucked into talking about how I felt when I was told about what happened. We can talk about that more when we get together face to face but it couldn’t have been worse timing for us and him.”
“I hope to see him after the Stoke game. I’ve got to focus on our FA Cup tie first and then I will go and see him.”
Barton, signed by Newcastle from Manchester City for Â£5.8M in the summer, will not play against Stoke City, and is unlikely to play until we know the outcome of his trial, at the very earliest.
But we’re very proud of Big Sam right now, as a man, that’s for sure.
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