After watching Match of the Day and assessing the quality of the opening day of the new Premiership season, I think it's fair to say that it wasn't quite the excitement we were looking forward to. When you find yourself not talking about the game, but instead, the controversy surrounding a player, you know that there was serious quality lacking from quite literally every match.
Joey Barton made all the headlines yesterday and who would have guessed, it was for all the wrong reasons. Sparking anger across the Newcastle board probably wasn't the best way to start the new season as his entertaining tweets didn't impress many associated with Newcastle United.
A year on from the classic match at St. James' Park, its hardly surprising that the same fixture this year couldn't live up to the expectation. Instead of goals galore, we got no goals leading all the talk to be be about one man, Joey Barton.
In two separate incidents, Barton was involved in both, with one ending up with Gervinho getting sent off. The first one, Barton was actually the good guy as his ankle was the victim of a malicious stamp by Alexander Song.
The second incident however, was very different. Gervinho had the ball in the box, got clipped, and fell over. Yes, he did make a meal of it as if he had just got shot but we have all come to terms with the fact that that is just part of the modern game.
Barton, furious with Gervinho's dive, went over and dragged the Ivory Coast international up with disgust. Gervinho stood up for himself, which I'm not sure many players would do when against Barton, and gave him a girly slap to the head. For me both players are in the wrong, and as Wenger said "either both of them should have gone or none of them".
Barton doesn't have the best reputation as it is and this definitely hasn't improved it either. There is no doubt that he is a very talented footballer but he just has to get his act together.
What do you think? Do you agree with the referees decision?
I would love to hear any comments you may have.
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