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Investigation into Rangers' star Joey Barton 'Celtic bet on Barcelona game'

By Ronnie Esplin

Published 20/09/2016

Joey Barton
Joey Barton

Joey Barton is under investigation for allegedly breaking football betting rules, the Press Association is reporting.

The controversial Rangers midfielder was banned from the club on Monday for three weeks after a training ground altercation following the 5-1 defeat to Celtic.

The Scottish Football Association and the Gambling Commission are looking into claims that the 34-year-old bet on Celtic to suffer a heavy defeat to Barcelona last Tuesday night. Brendan Rodgers' side lost 7-0 in their Champions League Group C opener in the Nou Camp.

The SFA has a strict no-betting policy on football games and if found guilty Barton could face a ban.

Fifa also has in place a global ban on any professional gambling in the sport.

More:

Joey Barton left in limbo as Rangers impose a ban

Joey Barton must give shirt off his back to stay at Rangers

Barton is unlikely to face a major punishment if the alleged gambling was restricted to one incident.

Two former Rangers players are among those to have been punished for breaching the SFA's blanket ban on football betting.

Barcelona's Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez gestures after scoring a goal during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona's Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez gestures after scoring a goal during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. AFP/Getty Images
Friends reunited: Former Liverpool players Kolo Toure of Celtic and Luis Suarez of Barcelona embrace after the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
Barcelona's Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez shoots to score a goal beside Celtic's Irish defender Eoghan O'Connell (L) during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENELLUIS GENE/AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona's Luis Suarez reacts during a Champions League, Group C soccer match between Barcelona and Celtic, at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Luis Suarez of Barcelona celebretes scoring his sides sixth goal with team mates during the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Luis Suarez of Barcelona celebretes scoring his sides sixth goal with team mates during the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
Barcelona's Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez (C) is congratulated by Barcelona's Brazilian forward Neymar (R) and Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi (L) after scoring a goal during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENELLUIS GENE/AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona's midfielder Andres Iniesta celebrates after scoring a goal during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENELLUIS GENE/AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona's Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez (L) controls the ball prior to scoring a goal beside Celtic's Irish defender Eoghan O'Connell (L) during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENELLUIS GENE/AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona's Brazilian forward Neymar celebrates a goal during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENELLUIS GENE/AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona's Brazilian forward Neymar walks to shoot a corner kick during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / JOSEP LAGOJOSEP LAGO/AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates after scoring his side's first goal during a Champions League, Group C soccer match between Barcelona and Celtic, at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Neymar of Barcelona celebrates scoring his sides third goal during the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
Barcelona's Brazilian forward Neymar looks on during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / JOSEP LAGOJOSEP LAGO/AFP/Getty Images
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Neymar of Barcelona celebrates scoring his sides third goal during the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi walks after scoring a goal during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / JOSEP LAGOJOSEP LAGO/AFP/Getty Images
Celtic's French forward Moussa Dembele (top) vies with Barcelona's German goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen (R) during their Champions League football match between FC Barcelona and Celtic CF at the Camp Nou in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENELLUIS GENE/AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi (up) celebrates a goal with teammate Barcelona's Brazilian forward Neymar during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / JOSEP LAGOJOSEP LAGO/AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona's German goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen (L) is congratuled by teammates after stopping a penalty during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENELLUIS GENE/AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona's defender Gerard Pique (R) and other teammates congratulate Barcelona's German goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen (2nd L) after stopping a penalty kick during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENELLUIS GENE/AFP/Getty Images
Barcelona supporters wave Estelada or Catalan pro-independence flags distributed by separatists groups ahead of the Champions League, Group C soccer match between Barcelona and Celtic, at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)
Barcelona's Lionel Messi, right, walks past his teammates Neymar, center, and Luis Suarez after scoring his side's first goal during a Champions League, Group C soccer match between Barcelona and Celtic, at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)
Barcelona's Lionel Messi, left, celebrates with Barcelona's Neymar after scoring the opening goal during a Champions League, Group C soccer match between Barcelona and Celtic, at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
Barcelona's Lionel Messi, left, celebrates with Barcelona's Neymar after scoring the opening goal during a Champions League, Group C soccer match between Barcelona and Celtic, at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
Barcelona's Lionel Messi, left, takes on Celtic's Erik Sviatchenko during a Champions League, Group C soccer match between Barcelona and Celtic, at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)
Celtic's Moussa Dembele, top, jumps above Barcelona's Gerard Pique during a Champions League, Group C soccer match between Barcelona and Celtic, at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
Celtic's Scott Brown back heads the ball during a Champions League, Group C soccer match between Barcelona and Celtic, at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
Barcelona's Ivan Rakitic, left, and Celtic's Moussa Dembele vie for the ball during a Champions League, Group C soccer match between Barcelona and Celtic, at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)
Celtic's players warm up before their Champions League football match against FC Barcelona at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016. AFP/Getty Images
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Supporters enjoy the pre match atmosphere prior to the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Supporters enjoy the pre match atmosphere prior to the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Supporters arrive prior to the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Supporters arrive prior to the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Supporters arrive prior to the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: A general view as Celtic players walk on the pitch prior to the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Emilio Izaguirre (L) and Jozo Simunovic of Celtic walk on the pitch prior to the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: A general view prior to the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 13: A dog and his handler perform a search prior to the UEFA Champions League Group C match between FC Barcelona and Celtic FC at Camp Nou on September 13, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Goalkeeper Steve Simonsen missed one game after betting on 55 matches and Ian Black earlier served a three-match suspension for gambling on 140 matches, including several he played in. The former Hearts midfielder scored in a 4-2 victory over East Stirlingshire after predicting his team would draw in an accumulator.

But a potential SFA charge will leave Barton even more vulnerable after his club suspension cast major doubt on whether he would play for Rangers again.

Barton was told to stay away for a further three weeks after talks with Mark Warburton and board members on Monday failed to resolve the situation which had seen the 34-year-old informally banished from the club for the previous five days following a training-ground row.

The former England international has been told not to speak to the media after further angering Warburton by giving a radio interview last Friday when he claimed the manager's decision to send him home had been "strange".

But he has given further insight into his turbulent spell in Glasgow in newspaper interviews given last Wednesday - before news of the controversy broke - but published in this Tuesday's editions.

The former Manchester City and Newcastle midfielder admits feeling regret over his move to Scotland during a series of interviews with English-based journalists to promote his upcoming autobiography, No Nonsense, in which he claims he was approached by a third party to consider a move to Celtic just before he joined Rangers.

"I was never going to change my mind and let down Rangers," Barton told The Guardian.

However, on his general decision to move to Ibrox, Barton also said: "Reflecting on it, would I have made the same decision? Probably not.

"But I know that in time it will turn out to be the right decision. As tough as it is, adversity brings out the best in you."

The arguments with his team-mates - it is understood last Tuesday was not the first occasion - are put into context by Barton's comments on his approach to improving Rangers' indifferent start to the season.

"It's difficult when I'm playing at a level which, clearly, I've not played at before," the former QPR and Burnley player said.

"It's a much lower level and I'm trying to help people get to a higher level.

"They think me helping is me trying to say: 'You're not good enough.' It's difficult."

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