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Joey Barton Is a Modest Little Crazy Man: “I’m as Good as Anyone In the England Squad”

by Mad Dog and Glory

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St James’ Park man wants Fabio to notice him.

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Peterborough United/Newcastle United Championship 03.04.10 Photo: Tim Parker Fotosports International Joey Barton Newcastle salutes the fans at the end of the game Photo via Newscom

“First and foremost, I want to do well for Newcastle United. But watching some of the performances in the World Cup over the summer I think that on form, I’m as good as anybody in this country.

“I don’t say that lightly and I have to go out and prove that, but surely every midfielder in this country should be thinking like that? They should be looking at it and saying, ‘That’s where I want to be and that’s where I can go.’ That’s my goal, and if I break into the England squad, it proves that I am doing fantastic for this football club. Firstly, I have to do well for Newcastle, though.”

Barton played only a cameo role in last season’s Championship title charge as injury once again sidelined him, and he is desperate to show the Newcastle faithful what he can do.

“I was an England international as a box-to-box midfield player,” said Barton, who won his solitary cap against Spain in 2007, where he replaced Frank Lampard in the 79th minute of a 1-0 defeat. “I don’t say this lightly, but I’m a much more rounded footballer now than I was when I first signed for this club. Injuries have restricted my chances to show that. If I can sustain fitness for a long period of time, I’m very confident of finding the form that got me in the England squad.”

“Fabio Capello said he will pick players who were in form. Sometimes it hasn’t happened like that and people have been picked when they haven’t performed at club level. I think if we can get anyone from this football club into the England team, we’re doing really well.” (Guardian)

The Premier League has missed crazy little midfielder Joey Barton but luckily he’s on his way back to the top tier. Clearly his statement is more an indictment of just how poor England were at the World Cup but maybe the pint sized performer should be a little concerned about how easily Newcastle United coped without his services last term.

Maybe even when fully fit he won’t be a regular in Chris Hughton’s St James’ Park selections but even if he is there seems only a slight chance he will figure in Fabio Capello’s plans, unless of course he manages to behave himself for six months and puts in consistent top notch performances, something he has never managed to do up to this point in his career.

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