Joey Barton ban: PFA offers support to QPR midfielder
Joey Barton will be offered professional support, says Professional Footballers' Association chairman Clarke Carlisle.
The QPR midfielder, 29, was handed a 12-match ban for his sending off on the final day of the Premier League season.
"We as a union are there for all of our members as long as they show a willingness to address their behaviour," said Carlisle.
"Should Joey want our support we most definitely will be there for him."
Barton was charged with violent conduct on Wednesday after he was involved in an incident with Carlos Tevez during QPR's 3-2 defeat to Manchester City.
Joey Barton's troubled career
- December 2004: Stubs a lit cigar into the eye of Manchester City team-mate Jamie Tandy during club's Christmas party.
- July 2005: Involved in an altercation with a 15-year-old Everton fan at City's team hotel in Bangkok. Later fined eight week's wages by City for his involvement.
- September 2006: Drops his shorts in front of Everton fans following City's 1-1 draw at Goodison Park.
- May 2007: Suspended for the rest of the season by City after a training-ground altercation with Ousmane Dabo.
- May 2009: Playing for Newcastle, Barton is sent off against Liverpool for a late challenge on Xabi Alonso. Later suspended until further notice by his club.
- November 2009: Charged with violent conduct by the FA after allegedly punching Blackburn's Morten Gamst Pedersen during a Premier League match.
- August 2011: Transfer listed by Newcastle after a number of Twitter comments criticising the club.
- May 2012: Now playing for QPR, Barton is dismissed for striking Manchester City's Carlos Tevez. Then involved in altercations with Sergio Aguero and Vincent Kompany. Later charged with two acts of violent conduct by the FA.
He was given a four-match ban for that offence but clashes with Sergio Aguero and Vincent Kompany after he had been dismissed resulted in a further eight-match suspension.
It was the latest in a number of indiscretions involving Barton.
He was twice fined by former club Manchester City for stubbing a lit cigar in the eye of young team-mate Jamie Tandy at a Christmas party - and for his involvement in an altercation with a 15-year-old Everton fan at City's team hotel in Bangkok during a pre-season tour.
While playing for Newcastle, Barton was charged with common assault and affray and jailed for six months. He was also banned by the Football Association in November 2010 after he punched Blackburn winger Morten Gamst Pedersen during Newcastle's 2-1 defeat at St James' Park.
Though Carlisle was keen to highlight Barton's attempts to control his anger, he conceded there is still some way to go.
"Joey has done some fantastic work with regards to his anger management over the years," he said.
"We have seen him make great strides as a person and the way he does conduct himself 95% of the time, but when you have a reputation it is the times that you lose it that comes to the fore.
"It is not Joey Barton per se that is the problem it is the actions he does when he loses control. It is something he has been working very hard to get on top of but obviously there is still work to do.
"It is when Joey sees the red mist and it is these things we need to get a control of because it sets a poor example to the thousands of kids who are watching the game.
"We really want our professionals to have the highest levels of respect for one and other and control themselves and their actions, both on and off the pitch. This is something we are trying to press forward into the players - a consciousness of their responsibilities."
PFA chief executive Gordon Taylor offered his support to Barton but insisted the 12-match ban did not come as a surprise.
PFA chief executive Gordon Taylor
“When he is on track he is sound, articulate and good-humoured but there is a red mist that comes down and it knocks you back to square one”
"You can't defend those actions, this was a game going out all over the world," Taylor said.
"The game is bigger than all of us and can't revolve around a single person and I am not surprised at the sanction."
Taylor then went on to talk about Barton's tweets which were published shortly after the game.
"He did himself no favours talking about taking one or two Manchester City players off with him. It was quite depressing really," he said.
"He is at a stage in life where I felt things were going better albeit there were controversies with his social media.
"He has spoken at conferences about that (the social media) and when he is on track he is sound, articulate and good-humoured but there is a red mist that comes down and it knocks you back to square one."
Meanwhile, Paul Finney, from the Independent Rs QPR website, believes Barton should donate some of his wages to charity to compensate for the fact he will not play for 12 games.
"A 12-game ban does seem a bit harsh, but I'm not going to defend him because we have children following the club," said Finney.
"One thing Joey can do to begin the healing process is donate some of his wages to charity when he's not playing."