Over the top
Joey Barton has spoken out about his ban from football, handed down after his gambling offences came to light, and has been rather scathing when looking at some of the other bans handed down to footballers for other offences.
He hit out at the FA, and claimed that because he is outspoken, it has made him a target for the powers that be, and made what would have been a smaller ban far, far worse.
Barton said: “I suppose everyone else isn’t me.
“Luis Suarez racially insults Patrice Evra. He bites a player. John Terry [abuses Anton Ferdinand]. Eight and 10 games for Suarez. Four for Terry. That’s 22 in total. For Cantona’s kung-fu kick it’s nine months, say 48 games,” he told The Sunday Times.
“I’m getting all that in one hit. I’ve basically kung-fu-ed a fan, racially abused two players and bitten another in one go – and more – in FA eyes. For doing a football coupon.”
Of course, an 18 month ban for Barton essentially means his career could be over, and while he does plan on appealing it, should said appeal fail, he could well decide to retire.
Finding another club to take him may also prove an issue, something he is very aware of, especially if he carries on speaking out while he is suspended.