His Newcastle future may be in doubt but one thing for sure is Joey Barton will not be playing on Newcastle United’s pre-season tour of America.
The midfielder has been notified by the United States Embassy that he has not been granted a visa for access to the country due to his troubled past, leaving Alan Pardew a man short as he prepares his squad for the new season.
“Unfortunately, I was denied my visa due to my past,” Barton told the club’s official website. “I regret not being able to travel with the club on this trip, but at the same time, I don’t expect to be treated any differently or more favourably than anyone else in a similar situation.
“All I can do is continue to improve as a person, which is what I intend to do.
“Again, apologies to all the NUFC supporters – as well as the fast growing legions of football supporters in the United States who I was looking forward to meeting. I will see you in the future.”
Newcastle fans will be hoping Barton plays an integral part in their season following the loss of Kevin Nolan to West Ham, and instead of travelling to the United States, Barton will travel with the reserve team to Holland.
The first team departs for America on Sunday and will play Sporting Kansas, Orlando City and Columbus Crew over a 10-day tour, but Barton will be playing the likes of Hollandia, FC Utrecht and Almere City.
Whether or not Barton remains at Newcastle for the upcoming season remains to be seen but the midfielder was clearly unhappy at the way Kevin Nolan was treated by the Newcastle board – voicing his opinions via Twitter – and the 28-year-old is attracting the interest of Aston Villa.
Should Barton leave, that will be two leaders that Newcastle have lost and the 6/1 for Pardew’s side to be relegated looks a bit of value.