Video clip Score: five / five
Online video Rating: / 5
Movie Score: five / 5
QPR midfielder Joey Barton has refused to confirm whether he will remain at the club next season. The midfielder still has two years left on his contract, but QPR will be unable to sustain his wages for much longer. He is one of their highest earning players, while the player himself has said on several occasions that he does not belong in the Championship. Even though it appears that Rangers may be promoted automatically, Barton was not ready to commit his future to the club at this stage in the season.
The midfielder spent the last season on loan at French club Marseille and there have been suggestions that he may be willing to go back for a second spell.
The 31-year-old will find it difficult to find clubs that are willing to take him partly because of his chequered history with regard to discipline. He is also known to be a man of opinions, which have led to strained relationships with several clubs and players belonging to other clubs. However, he has been an important part of the QPR team that has managed to keep itself in the hunt for promotion spots even after 10 matches in the season.
“I still believe that I am a Premier League player. I am part of a club that got relegated. I wasn’t here to be part of that. But I have a contract and I am here to get the club back in the Premier League. Beyond that is getting too far ahead of ourselves. Is it a good thing that I didn’t go to France? Not really, no – I had an offer on the table from Marseille,” said Barton.
The club are currently third in the table with only goal difference separating them from the top. Barton has two goals in 15 matches this season.
Aston Villa are on the lookout for a new striker after being disappointed with the efforts of Christian Benteke this campaign. The club went to great lengths in order to keep the Belgian striker at the club. He signed a new contract worth in excess of £ 50,000 per week in the summer, but his performance levels have dropped substantially. He has not scored for the club in months and it is starting to affect of the league position of Villa. Hence, Lambert has revealed that he is looking to sign striker in this January transfer window.
He could be reunited with his former player Grant Holt, who is currently playing for Championship outfit Wigan athletic. Holt is someone Lambert knows extremely well after having worked with him for three years during his time at Norwich. Holt was a major reason towards Lambert doing well at Norwich. The England striker, though, has not been in the best form since moving to Wigan. However, Lambert believes that Holt has the capability to rediscover his form and is ready to take him back to the Premier league, but it is likely to be on a loan deal.
It will be beneficial for all parties since Wigan need not take on his huge wages.
“I had him [Holt] at Norwich. Holt was fantastic for me at Norwich. He’s a proper guy. I have just been told the rumours are going through everywhere. Until something is concrete, we’ll just have to see. If he comes. He may not come. [it's a case of] Maybe ‘aye’, maybe ‘no’. He did brilliant for me at Norwich,” said Lambert. Holt will have to convince Lambert that he still has what it takes to deliver in the top division of English football since he has not scored since August.
Online video Ranking: five / 5
Online video Rating: 5 / five
The head coach of Scotland Gordon Strachan is surprised by the current situation of Alan Hutton in relation to his club career but more specifically Aston Villa. The 28 years old defender signed for Aston Villa on August of 2011 but ever since then has made 31 appearances all of them being in the same season he was signed.
Failing to make any appearances in this season for the English club has left Strachan shocked as why the club leaves a player of his quality not playing an important role for the squad.
Strachan said: “He has been brilliant for us.’’
“It’s a mystery of football how he is not getting a game somewhere’’.
“I look at other games in the Premier League, look at right-backs and go, ‘He’s better than them.’ It’s very strange he’s not playing Premier League football because the games he’s played for us have been outstanding’’.
“And he’s not playing against teams away down at 100th in the world rankings. He’s doing it against the teams at the top of the world game. Sometimes people say players are great at international level but they’re playing against teams at 90th or 100th in the world’’.
“But Alan is playing against top, top players.”
In the beginning of this year Hutton was loaned out to Mallorca but the loan finalized on June and despite Hutton’s intention of staying with the Spanish side, the deal was never completed and now he is nowhere near the selection radar of Villa’s coach Paul Lambert.
The question emerges as to how long will he remain being in a club that he plays no important role?
Video clip Ranking: 5 / five
Video clip Score: 4 / five