Transfer news: Joey Barton refuses to rise to Neville Southall's bait and also cools talk of a move to Everton despite agent's comments

Midfielder calls Southall a 'hero' and says he has the 'utmost respect' for the former goalkeeper who had likened him to Forrest Gump after rumours of a move to Goodison Park

Queens Park Rangers midfielder Joey Barton has refused to react to Everton legend Neville Southall’s criticism of the 30-year-old, and has also played down talks that he is seeking a move to Goodison Park.

Barton’s agent Willie McKay admitted yesterday that he had contacted Everton manager Roberto Martinez over a transfer to the club, which Barton supported as a young boy, claiming that he was willing to take up to a 50 per cent wage cut in order to join them.

McKay also said that Martinez was interested in a move for Barton, but Southall likened the player to Forrest Gump when speaking on the matter, saying: "Yes he is fit and runs up and down all day but Forrest Gump did that as well didn't he?”

But Barton took to Twitter to respond to the comments, and spoke of his admiration for Southall despite his criticism as well as his preference to remain with Marseille before the deal collapsed.

“Big @NevilleSouthall has given it to me I see. Gutted, he was one of my hero's growing up. Best keeper in the world at 1 stage,” he said on his official Twitter account.

“Am not getting after him. Regardless, of what he thinks of me. I will always have the utmost respect for the player he was. #legend.”

Barton also added his thoughts on the speculation regarding his agent’s attempts to force through a move away from Loftus Road.

"It's well known who I support. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to work that out," he wrote on Twitter.

"Good football agents will always be looking to move players, that's how they make money.

"Recent rumours are slightly wide of the mark, everyone knows where I would like to end up, in France, playing in the Champions League for Olympique Marseille, nothing has changed my end.

"If not, I am contracted to QPR and will give my all to help them regain their Premier League status.

"If something happens and both clubs decide differently than I will assess my options.

"No matter what happens, I intend to enjoy my football and play with a smile on my face. Again, wherever that maybe. Careers are too short.

"Hope that clears my situation up for everyone. Stop listening to all the tittle-tattle.

Barton summed up with a quote from the film Southall had compared him to, posting: “After all, Life is like a box of chocolates...”

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
techPatent specifies 'anthropomorphic device' to control media devices
Voices
The PM proposed 'commonsense restrictions' on migrant benefits
voicesAndrew Grice: Prime Minister can talk 'one nation Conservatism' but putting it into action will be tougher
News
Ireland will not find out whether gay couples have won the right to marry until Saturday afternoon
news
News
Kim Jong-un's brother Kim Jong-chol
news
News
Manchester city skyline as seen from Oldham above the streets of terraced houses in North West England on 7 April 2015.
news
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?