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Archive for tag: Newcastle v Arsenal 2011.

Joey Barton v Arsenal: One-off or is there a deeper problem?

August 14th, 2011 | 31 Comments |

Barton's behaviour v Arsenal 2011.
Should we be worried?
Newcastle United’s Joey Barton was at the centre of a mini-storm during yesterday’s match against Arsenal, but is it indicative of a longer-term problem with the player?

Obviously the press are having a field day with the Barton/Gervinho stuff, but I do have some long-term concerns.

In the heat of the match, amidst the desire to try and squeeze 3 points out of Arsenal, I was quite happy to see Gervinho sent off and Barton only receive a yellow. On reflection though, I didn’t like the way Barton reacted to the ‘slap’ any more than I liked Gervinho’s dive in the box.

Maybe I’m old-fashioned, but I don’t like cheating in sport and neither do I think that saying “it’s just the modern game” or “we have to do it because other teams do” is any excuse.

I think it’s sad that we’d struggle to find a football player who’d play with 100% honesty these days, even it’s just when they ‘play for’ free kicks. It’s doubly sad that we’ve come to accept all that as ‘normal’.

But that’s kind of an aside. What I’m concerned about is Barton’s frame of mind. I wonder if yesterday was just a one-off or whether there’s a frustration bubbling within Barton that’s going to come to the surface during the games he plays for us this season. Red cards can cost us games and, I have to say, I get the impression that Barton is heading for an eruption. (more…)