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Rangers could be facing £2m bill to get rid of bad-boy Joey Barton

By Andy Newport

Rangers face having to pay off the remainder of Joey Barton’s £2million contract if they cannot find grounds to sack him.

The controversial midfielder’s Ibrox career appears all but over after he was told not to report back for training today.

Barton is on the eve of completing a month-long club suspension but Rangers have now confirmed he has been told to stay away for another week while further disciplinary action is considered.

The club said in a statement: “Joey Barton has been informed that his suspension by the club has been extended by one week.

“This is part of a formal disciplinary procedure and Joey has been instructed not return to Ibrox until further notice.

“Neither party (the club and player) will make any further statement or comment.”

The player and his representatives are now awaiting further instruction, but it is almost certain he will not be seen again in a Rangers kit.

He signed a two-year deal in July worth £20,000 a week and, unless Rangers decide to dismiss him, Barton will demand the balance of his contract is settled.

The former Manchester City, Newcastle and QPR player was banished from the club’s training base last month following a row with boss Mark Warburton and team-mate Andy Halliday.

His refusal to apologise and an unsanctioned live radio interview saw his initial seven-day exclusion extended by another three weeks.

Barton is also being investigated by the Scottish Football Association over allegations he broke strict betting rules. The 34-year-old has been given until Wednesday to respond after he was charged with placing 44 bets on games between July 1 and September 15 this year.

Meanwhile, Barton has revealed that he got rejected by Arsene Wenger after getting Gervinho sent off in Arsenal’s clash with Newcastle.

The midfielder left his second employers Newcastle for QPR in 2011, but it was during his last days at St. James’ Park that he jeopardised a move to Arsenal.

“I signed for QPR on the rebound from Arsenal”, Barton wrote in his new book No Nonsense. “Pat Rice, Arsene Wenger’s assistant, had told Peter Kay they fancied me.

“A meeting with me was in the manager’s diary for the first Tuesday of the new season.

“He had the perfect opportunity to monitor my form before that, in what was to be my penultimate appearance for Newcastle, a goal-less draw against his team at St James’ Park.

“Maybe word of my potential move had filtered through to the away dressing room. They queued up to have a dig, and referee Peter Walton missed Alex Song’s stamp on me.

“If there was to be no red carpet, I made sure there was going to be a red card by going down like a sack of spuds when Gervinho slapped me.

“His outrage, on being sent off, was worth my booking. Rice sent Pete a text soon after: ‘Arsene says Joey will never play for this club’”.

Belfast Telegraph


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