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Joey Barton responds with statement via League Managers Association after sacking

4 months ago
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Joey Barton left Fleetwood Town on Monday, a statement released on Monday afternoon simply said that the former Newcastle player had with ‘immediate effect’ left the club.

This leading to much speculation as to whether it was the club or Joey Barton who had made this happen.

However, a further official statement yesterday from Fleetwood Town clarified the position.

The club releasing quotes from the owner Andy Pilley, which included: ‘Today’s decision was a tough one for me to make, but I felt now was the right time for the club to go in a different direction.’

To outsiders it looked pretty harsh, as Joey Barton has surprised a lot of people by doing what appears to be a very decent job.

Fleetwood Town had finished fourteenth in League One in 2017/18, Joey Barton then taking over and ending up eleventh in his first season as a manager. In the shortened 2019/20 season, Barton took them considerably higher. Fleetwood ending up sixth in the table and making the play-offs, losing out to Wycombe Wanderers who made it into the Championship.

Whilst this season Joey Barton has / had them in tenth place, ahead of Sunderland on goal difference, three points off the play-offs.

By happy coincidence, Joey Barton starting his first managerial job, saw Sunderland also drop into League One.

To nobody’s surprise, Barton’s past ‘banter’ with Sunderland fans went to a whole new level, with the former Newcastle midfielder getting by far the upper hand. In six meetings between the two clubs since Joey Barton was appointed, Fleetwood won two, got four draws, with no wins for the Mackems.

Now on Tuesday, Joey Barton has released an official response to his sacking via the LMA (League Managers Association).

You have to say, a pretty classy response in the circumstances if you read below.

Joey Barton with the right kind of message in times that are so difficult for so many people.

Joey Barton Statement released through the League Managers Association (LMA) – 5 January 2021:

“First of all I would like to thank the chairman Andy Pilley for the opportunity to manage Fleetwood Town. I have enjoyed every minute of my time at the club.

“I have learned so much over the past two and half years. There are some brilliant people at Fleetwood Town and I have enjoyed getting to know every one of them.

“I would also like to thank all of the coaching staff, both the ones I inherited and the ones I brought in. It has been some journey with some highs and lows and I have really enjoyed watching each of them get better every single day.

“I would like to thank the fans and say that I appreciate you sticking with me in my first management role.

“I am not naive enough to think I always got it right, but my only intention during my tenure was to drive this football club forward. I have nothing but good things to say about the people of Fleetwood and the surrounding community. I was welcomed from day one.

“To the players, thanks to each of you for bringing it every day. Nobody enjoyed playing against Fleetwood Town and ultimately that is down to you. Thanks for being patient with me on my coaching journey. I look forward to watching you as you continue to improve.

“It is tough times for everybody at the moment with all that is going on in the world.

“I am just a football manager who has lost his job, there are plenty of people who were much better than me at theirs that have lost them over the past 12 months.

“I will use this time out to keep getting better, until the next opportunity comes.

“All the best for 2021.”

JB

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