Wolves manager Mick McCarthy has defended Karl Henry after Joey Barton's verbal attack on the midfielder and insisted: "He has never gone out to hurt anyone."
Barton delivered a stinging assessment of Henry after QPR's 3-0 weekend win at Wolves, saying "he is always sticking his foot in trying to hurt people". McCarthy was determined not to respond to Barton's comments but was quick to back former captain Henry.
The former Republic of Ireland manager said: "Karl is one of the best pros I've ever worked with in terms of his attitude and conscientiousness to his profession."
McCarthy continued: "He has earned himself the right to play in the Premier League by his guts and determination and made himself a better player.
"I've got nothing but admiration for him and never, ever, has he gone out to hurt anyone.
"In defence of my player, who has been with me for five years, I'd hang my hat on him all day long. He is a great guy."
McCarthy also dismissed Barton's claims that Henry is a "Sunday League player".
He said: "Not unless Wolves are in the Dog and Duck League! He is a Premier League player. He captained us to the Championship, and has been instrumental in our success over the last five years."