Writer: Ross Molyneux
Date:Friday June 8 2007
Joey B`s fellow Scouser and new coach, Terry McDermott, has thrown his support behind the player and Big Sam`s bid to bring him to St James`. Speaking about his reputation and other aspects, Terry has given himself a bit of credibility from the usual front of being club comedian and bookies runner! Anyway he said:
'I'm from Kirkby in Liverpool and Joey is from Huyton. They are just three or four miles apart and let's just say that you have to be tough to survive in either place. Now I am an adopted Geordie and Newcastle United is my team. And what I would say to Joey Barton is - show the same passion on the field for us as you have for Manchester City and our fans will love you.
I have seen Joey play for Manchester City on numerous occasions, both when they have been playing us and when I have been sent down to watch them. And I have to say that in the past couple of years, Joey Barton has been Manchester City. If he has played well, then so have they. In a lot of ways he has been the focal point of the team in the same way Steven Gerrard is at Liverpool.
In fact, if he had been on the open market and not had that £5.5m clause in his contract and had a few problems off the field then he would have been a £10m-plus signing for us. People do silly things on and off the football field, nobody more than me. But I always cared about the clubs I was playing for and no-one can ever say that I gave less than 100% for Bury, Newcastle, Liverpool and England.
And Joey Barton is the same. Yes he sometimes steps over the mark, but I can understand where he is coming from and if he can curb all this then he is going to be a very, very good signing.
But I don't think he is as bad as people make out and there is no doubt in my mind that Sam Allardyce will be able to handle him. And if he does then Joey Barton can turn out to be a great asset and a wonderful signing for Newcastle United.'
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Date:Friday June 8 2007
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