L’enfant Terrible

Joey Barton is a man who knows how to divide opinion.

Some see Joseph, as he is known on Twitter, as a maverick. A thinking man’s footballer who is not afraid to speak his mind and share his opinion even if it considered controversial.

And there are those who see him as a petulant, arrogant and egotistical young man who tries to pass himself off as cultured by quoting philosophers and labelling himself a pacifist.

How a man who is noted for his aggressive style of play and who once of stubbed a cigar out in a teammates eye can call himself a “pacifist” is beyond me. He’s not exactly Ghandi let’s put it that way.

And in the wake of his dreadful faux French accent in a recent press conference for Marseille Barton has taken it upon himself to cast doubt on QPR’s survival chances this season.

I know Barton is not the most popular with QPR fans after his explosive dismissal at the end of last season which could have quite conceivably seen the West London club relegated had results not gone their way.

But his recent comments, although true, surely mean there is no way back for the former Manchester City man when his loan at Marseille comes to an end.

Barton is technically still a QPR player and as such should not publicly criticise the club and cast doubt over their relegation chances.

He claimed in an interview that unless things at Loftus Road change and the group of talented individuals start playing as a team then they will more than likely be playing in the Championship next season.

Whilst in my opinion this is a fair and factual comment I doubt QPR fans would like to hear it coming from Joey Barton. Irrespective of his self-imposed exile to Ligue 1 surely he should not be allowed to speculate on his parent club in such a way.

Joey Barton has made no secret of his desire to stay with the French club so perhaps this is just his way of ensuring that he burns all bridges with QPR and engineers a transfer to Marseille when his loan spell comes to an end.

Whatever the reason or motive for his comments one thing is certain, QPR fans won’t be seeing Barton wearing blue and white hoops anytime soon.

And I doubt too many of them will be upset by that. Au Revior Joseph.

Robert Lock