Just as you thought that Joey Barton was delicately placing his controversies to one side, quietly adjusting to a new life in the south of France, his big mouth strikes again.
One could be forgiven for thinking that the fresh Sea air of the Mediterranean would have a tranquil soothing effect on the ever simmering blood of the ex England midfielder, but staying true to his unbalanced temperament Barton is back to his opinionated best… or worst, depending which camp you nestle in?
Reacting to the FA’s four match punishment of John Terry, the Twitter addict sharply logged into his account and stormed, "What an absolute farce. Twelve games for violent conduct and only four for that. [The] FA should be embarrassed. #Shambles,"
No doubt still frothing wildly at the mouth, whilst his fingers trembled with rage, he continued, "By the FA's perverse reckoning, I'd [have] got less of a ban for racially abusing the Man City players than tickling them as I did. In what circumstances can that be right?"
After scuffling with three Manchester City players, on the final day of last season, Barton is currently serving a twelve match domestic ban. Employees QPR acted on the player’s strict punishment by shipping him off on a season long loan to the port city of Marseille, in a move he largely forced through himself.
Barton has a well known reputation for vocalising his most personal of thoughts on network site Twitter. Bombarding the internet with a stream of bizarre thoughts he has attracted over one and a half million followers. Being a huge fan of Manchester Band ‘The Smiths’ he regularly quotes Morrissey. In behaviour not fitting the typical stereotype of a professional footballer he also quotes the philosophy of Nietzsche and the writing of Orwell.
But his most famous tweets involved a comical electronic war of words with his former boss Alan Shearer. After criticising Barton’s behaviour, when sent off against City, the QPR loose cannon launched a string of abuse, including: "But I have a better hair (which is not hard), wear well better shirts on TV and have a personality (something u lack). I really don't like that prick, in fact I honestly despise him... Goodnight.”
"My favourite memory of him though is when he dropped his spuds when Keano put it on him. Goodnight Al, sleep well matey..."
When fellow Match of The Day pundit Gary Lineker became involved Barton signed off from their public argument by saying, "now back under your stone you odious little toad..."
With Barton now finding his typing fingers again anyone and anything could become a public target. Does anybody know of a ‘Twitters Anonymous’ or a football playing country that doesn’t have internet access?
image: © michael kjaer