Joey Barton had another excellent game today for Newcastle, but the fans didn’t know the build up to this game, behind the scenes.
Joey Barton – in action against Stoke
It seems like Alan Pardew had thought captain Kevin Nolan would miss this game through injury, and had told Joey to be prepared to be the captain for the game.
But Joey put in another excellent performance for Newcastle, in what turned out to be a great 4-1 win for the Magpies, against 3rd bottom Wolves.
It seems that Pardew was delighted with Barton’s professional performance, in what was a crucial game and a vital win for the Magpies:
This is what Alan said after the game to Spy Sports News :
“I felt he would be slightly disappointed, because we thought Kevin Nolan was going to miss out today through illness.”
“I said to Joey, ‘I’m going to give you the armband and lead by example’.”
“But when Kev came back I thought Barton might have wished he was captain. But he played like a captain today.”
“There was a lot of pressure on us today because we could have got sucked into that situation where all the bottom teams are winning.”
Joey Barton will get his wish to be captain next week at Aston Villa, because Kevin Nolan picked up his 10th yellow card of the season against Wolves, and will now miss the next two league games at Villa Park and at home to Manchester United.
Joey is the vice-caption at Newcastle, and since Kevin is out next week, Joey’s role will take on even greater significance, but at least Newcastle will have Ryan Taylor back from suspension for that game.
Joey could even play in central midfield at Villa Park, and Newcastle could play Ryan Taylor out on the right wing, where he was very impressive against Bolton.
Whatever the team selection is for next Saturday’s game, it’s important that Newcastle pick up some point(s) against Aston Villa.
Newcastle are still not quite safe yet on 39 points, but probably only need one more win in the remaining games to secure that safety, and of course Newcastle are also just 2 points out of 7th place in the league table.