Joey Barton took to Twitter on Sunday night to launch an attack on his former Newcastle manager and the Match of the Day pundit Alan Shearer following the former striker’s criticism of his dismissal during QPR’s defeat to Manchester City. In an expletive-littered rant he called Shearer a “prick”, a “bell” and added “I have better hair”. On Monday morning, he also took a swipe at Shearer’s colleague Gary Lineker.
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The QPR captain will serve an automatic four-match ban for his dismissal for elbowing the City striker Carlos Tevez during the second half at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday. However, he seems certain to face additional sanctions from the Football Association for his subsequent attacks on the match-winner Sergio Agüero and the City captain Vincent Kompany which, with the add-ons for previous dismissals, could see him start next season with a nine-match suspension.
Shearer condemned the player, who he coached during his short spell managing Newcastle in 2009, during Sunday night’s Match of the Day, prompting Barton’s rant.
“Shearers still on my case… “I know I f*cked up Alan, thanks for stating the obvious,” Barton tweeted.
He added: “Whilst were both stating the obvious about each other, can I just say for the record what a great player u were. Well better me…
“But I have a better hair (which is not hard), wear well better shirts on TV and have a personality(something u lack).
“P.S. My final point, ur a s*** pundit/manager…
“I really don’t like that prick, in fact I honestly despise him… Goodnight.
“I’d take it off Hansen and @GaryLineker but not from that bell, same fella that stamped on Neil Lennon …”. He added: “Selfish, boring man him. He can do one…
“My favourite memory of him though is when he dropped his spuds when Keano put it on him. Goodnight Al, sleep well matey…”
Barton had previously taken to the social media site to apologise for his red card and claimed that, once he had been sent off, he was trying to “take 1 of theirs with me”. But Shearer’s co-presenter Lineker believed his attack was an effort to deflect attention from his behaviour at Manchester City.
“No deflections here mate. Think the fact about 100m people seen it will see to that. Just don’t like how he gets personal …” replied Barton on Twitter on Monday morning.
When Lineker responded, to ask Barton whether he was “still kicking out” and still “misunderstood”, it sparked another explosion from the QPR midfielder.
“Do u wanna go there publicly “Mr Squeaky Clean,” tweeted Barton, before threatening to expose “skeletons” in Lineker’s “vast closet”.
He added: ” mind ur manners Squeaky…” Then signed off by saying: “now back under your stone you odious little toad…”
Earlier on Monday he had attempted to draw a line under both the sending off and the row with Shearer. He said: “Right enough about yesterday, I apologise to everyone offended by it. If that’s not enough for some, so be it. Life is too short.
“Things happen on the pitch, in the heat of battle sometimes. Not how we always plan them to happen.
“For there are brighter sides to life and I should know because I seen them, but not very often …”
Barton tweeted on Sunday night: “Can do nothing but apologise to the players and fans. Still don’t think it is a sending off. Still not my proudest moment but who gives a f*ck. We are safe.
“The head was never gone at any stage. Once I’d been sent off, one of our players suggested I should try to take 1 of theirs with me. Never worked but god loves a trier.
“Think a few people are forgetting Tevez started the fracas by throwing a punch to the head.”