West Ham United chairman David Gold has shrugged off speculation surrounding Joey Barton’s potential move to the east London outfit. Gold took to social media to clarify the ex-Queens Park Rangers man will not be part of Slaven Bilic’s side for the 2015/16 campaign.
In a Twitter post, he said: “Despite the speculation, Joey Barton will not be joining West Ham United.”
Barton has been without a club since leaving relegated QPR earlier this summer, and a move to the Hammers would have been the 32-year-old’s last shot at a Premier League club.
The midfielder also took to Twitter to convey his message about the deal falling through, while expressing his gratitude for the support he received.
Barton, who is infamous for his aggression on the pitch, believes his reputation as a player led to many West Ham fans protesting his move to Upton Park, but says he holds no qualms over the failed move and wished the club well for the future.
“I’d just like to thank the West Ham fans who sent me a lot of kind messages on social media and especially on Twitter,” said Barton in a video via Twitter.
“Obviously, with a character like myself there’s one or two who are not so kind or complimentary, that’s kind of par for the course with me these days.
“Despite a few having reservations, I felt I could really have done well and really offer something to the squad.
“It’s exciting times for the West Ham fans. I just wanted to wish you all the best in the future and no hard feelings,” he added.
The former Newcastle United and Manchester City man has vast experience in the Premier League, playing more than 250 games in a career spanning 12 years since making his debut for Manchester City in 2003.
Barton made 28 appearances for QPR last season, scoring a solitary goal and providing three assists but failed to help the Hoops stave off relegation. His career so far has been laden with on-pitch controversies, having accumulated 97 yellow cards and eight red cards.