Joey Barton isn’t shy of making his opinion heard about former club Newcastle United and no surprise to see him wading into the clash between Mike Ashley and Rafa Benitez.
Ashley promised Benitez ‘every penny’ and the freedom to do with the money as he wanted, the reality however has been a net spend of only £17m and the owner not even allowing the manager to bring in Tammy Abraham on loan at the start of the transfer window, after Rafa had set the deal up.
Joey Barton says it is obvious that Newcastle needed better players to deal with the step up and that with this not happening he can ‘understand Benitez’ frustrations’.
The currently banned midfielder says that this is ‘clearly two egos and a power struggle behind the scenes about what’s going on’.
As the former Newcastle player points out; ‘It usually ends up with the manager going’.
Like every other Newcastle fan, Joey Barton knows what the net result would be if Rafa was forced out, saying ‘it would be catastrophic for Newcastle’.
You won’t hear many arguments against that point of view on Tyneside.
Joey Barton speaking to Talksport:
“I think Newcastle are very vulnerable.
“I think they were vulnerable last year – they are very expansive.
“In certain parts of the field you can’t be vulnerable coming into the Premier League and no doubt Rafa Benitez will be aware of that – that’s probably why he wanted the money to spend.
“The team that wins the Championship…you need a totally different set of players almost to adapt to the Premier League.
“You go from being expected to win every week against lesser opposition, to trying to stay in games and trying to nick points against superior opposition.
“I can understand Benitez’s frustrations.
“There are clearly two egos and a power struggle behind the scenes about what’s going on.
“Benitez is loved by the fans, Ashley isn’t, and I think that will play out.
“It usually ends up with the manager going.
“I think if that was to happen now it would be catastrophic for Newcastle, especially on the eve of what is going to be an incredibly tough season for them.
“If everything was going swimmingly and they got all their transfer targets, it was still always going to be a tough year coming back up.
“I just hope for the fans that it resolves itself pretty soon because I think what people can never take away, is the passion of the Geordie fans.”