Joey Barton move to West Ham off after protests from fans

Hammers will not be signing controversial free agent

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The Independent Football

West Ham are understood to have pulled out of signing Joey Barton after protests from fans of the club.

The Hammers were thought to be close to a deal for the free agent, but decided against it following outpourings of disapproval from their fans who were against signing the 32-year-old.

According to the Daily Mirror, a club insider said on Tuesday night: "We've pulled out in the last hour because of the strength of feeling from the fans.

“He’s a good player and based on football decisions we’d have signed him, but in the interests of team spirit we haven't.”

The news shatters dreams of a revival of the Barton, Kevin Nolan and Andy Carroll triumvirate that proved so effective when all three players were at Newcastle.

One man who was in favour of the move was former West Ham boss Harry Redknapp.

Redknapp said on talkSPORT: “I heard him on the radio coming back from Old Trafford on Saturday and thought, 'What’s he doing on the radio, doing commentary? He should still be playing.'"

“I had a couple of managers ring me last week from good Championship clubs and I told them I’d take him.

“You’re going to have days when he’s very opinionated and he’s got strong opinions about the game and doesn’t hold back with them.

"But he’s a good player and a good trainer. He gets people at it, he wants to win."

However Barton's future plays out, you would hope that the midfielder is remaining philosophical about it.