Oh by the way have you heard of us - Sporting Chance?

By Lee Ryder on Dec 30, 09 08:47 PM

Just when Newcastle United appear to have a little bit of light at the end of the tunnel - the prospect of the apple cart being upset emerges in the shape of Joey Barton and those blokes who pay thousands of pounds to take the Cockney Press shooting ducks to make sure that Sporting Chance get a good round of publicity for saving the career of the Toon midfielder.

Well quite frankly I'm not that interested in Barton's latest comments to be honest.

The time for talking went long ago and until he's talking about helping Newcastle United back into the Premier League most fans simply don't care.

His latest outburst in which he claims "most footballers are knobs" is hardly going to do anything for the spirit of a team that is already punching above their weight even if he is talking in general terms.

There must have been Toon players thinking "does he mean me?"

As for the current side punching above their weight well...

It's not because they are short on ability but the current Newcastle United team deserve a lot of praise for doing it amidst a political nightmare.

They've managed to top the Championship table despite the current mess and silence of the boardroom - not because of them.

Are most footballer players nobs?

Well it depends on the circumstances, certainly getting smashed and then fighting with young lads in McDonalds represents acting like a nob to me whether you are a footballer or not.

I've only met Barton a few times and on a personal level he comes across as a decent bloke.

But then you have the end-less list of trouble that comes with him.

Yet the only thing you will be judged on by the majority of Toon fans is football at the end of the day.

As for Sporting Chance and their commitment to sorting out over-paid and over pampered superstars who can't handle their drink and appreciate the talents they were blessed with - good luck to them.

But don't expect a medal the size of a bin lid from anybody on Tyneside.

How is Tony Adams' getting on these days with his piano playing by the way?


bob harvey said:

Don't agree, Lee. We need two players.
1. Centre forward.
2. Joey Barton playing close to his best -- we can always hope.
Longer post lost due to captcha.

Jack said:

I read Joey's quotes in the paper and was personaly inspired by his new found togetherness and sense of focus. I especialy appreciated the way demonstated his maturity by calling his fellow peers 'a bunch of knobs'. It seems the good folks at Sporting chance have truly enabled him to 'become a man' at 28. I was starting to well up as I read they had given the tourchered genius 'the tools to understand himself. As long as he dosn't bring them to work with him the the decade should be bright for our Joey. Barton for England!

Al Baxter said:

Knowing you, Lee, all will be forgiven if he stays out of trouble and plays several blinders on the trott You're as fickle as the rest of them.

Ryder's reply: So IF he plays well and IF I reported (also known as telling the truth)that he plays well it's being fickle? Really logical Al, Happy New Year though.

Al Baxter said:

Duh. No. But you'll turn a blind eye to his past like most people seem to. Telling has two ls, journo. Tel it like it is...

Alex Moore said:

What an awful blog! To critcise a clinc that helps with drink and drug problems is just the lowest of the low! Sorry Lee, sometimes you do a great job on this blogs, but sometimes you also do some bad ones. Im afrid this is one of those times

Ryder's reply: A slightly over the top reaction there.

AA said:

I believe the Sporting Chance clinic help sportsmen of all levels and not just the overpaid footballers, but using them for publicity helps to generate funds to keep them going.

Jim R said:

I appreciate that anyone can make a mistake and become involved with alcohol and/or drugs, or both. I also admire organisations like sporting chance who work tirelessly for the benefit of people who need help to climb out of the pit of the despair and desperation induced by their self inflicted addictions. What I do not, and cannot accept is that we as a club should fund a luxurious life style for individuals while they try and determine whether or not they can, or indeed want to, turn their lives around to some semblance of the norm as accepted by the majority of society.

Football, like it or not, is a business, and as a business we cannot afford to wait patiently while people with serious health, social and criminal problems have undertaken medical healing and social reform.

Joey Barton has cost our club millions of pounds and waged a one man war against the reputation, honesty and integrity of us all. In my humble opinion he is a liability and not the asset we hoped he would be. Even he, must now realise, there is only so much drink in the last chance saloon. I am afraid it is time to call last orders on this sad individual, wish him well and bid him farewell.

If history teaches us anything it is that we don't learn from the lessons of history. That must change, and change now, with immediate effect - and not just for ubiquitous Mr. Barton either.
We, as a club, need a new cycle - path for 2010 and beyond, not a psyco - path.

Lest we regret.....


Lee Ryder

Lee Ryder - Proudly born and bred on Tyneside, the Chronicle's chief sports writer has followed the fortunes of the club over the last three decades as a Toon fan and football writer.

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