By Chris Wright
Newcastle midfielder Joey Barton is likely to face FA charges after punching Morten Gamst Pedersen in the gut during his side’s 2-1 defeat against Blackburn last night.
Referee Michael Jones did not punish Barton for the incident, which could leave the player open to retrospective action from the FA.
Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce opted not to give his thoughts on the matter after the game, instead leaving the relevant authorities to deal with it:
“I’m not really going to talk about that because I don’t want to detract from our victory. Whoever will see it will see it and do whatever needs to be done.”
Pedersen himself offered a similar view, adding:
“You saw the pictures. I don’t want to speak much about it now.”
After keeping his cool whilst having lumps kicked out of him by Wolves earlier in the season, it seemed like Barton may have finally reigned in that notoriously petty temper of his.
However, thumping an opponent in the stomach for the slightest clash of shoulders (for which Pedersen immediately turned and began to genuinely apologise for) is hardly the behaviour of a reformed man – and he can kiss that potential England call-up goodbye too.
Another sad case of ‘once an angry little prick, always an angry little prick’?