Glasgow Rangers of Scotland has signed controversial England midfielder Joey Barton.
The former Manchester city and Newcastle midfielder signed a two years contract with the Scottish club and rejected the chance to play with newly promoted Burnley who gained promotion to the premier league this season. Barton believes the opportunity to come north for the first time in his career was too good to turn down and the 33-year-old reckons the timing is perfect for the man whom manager Mark Warburton believes was the best midfielder in the English Championship last season. Barton said: “It was very simple. I came up, had a look around and was instantly impressed – both with what is happening at the club just now but also the history and tradition of the place.
“I was fortunate enough to have probably the best tour guide possible in a ‘Hall of Fame’ member in Davie Weir who showed me around the ground and the trophy room, and it was great to see everything this club has achieved in the past, but it’s also exciting to be writing some new history.The gaffer and players here have made incredible progress in the last 12 months. When given the opportunity, I was mindful that the club had a huge game in the Cup Final at the weekend, and I didn’t really want anything to distract from that.I also wanted to speak to my friends and family, but I knew instantly that I was going to come here. Once I had walked into the building and seen what this club is about, I knew it would fit perfectly with what I wanted.I knew it was a place that offered me an incredible challenge and an incredible opportunity, and I am so grateful and so happy to finally be a Rangers player, and I am really looking forward to the challenges ahead.”
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Barton, speaking to the Rangers website, claims that being part of Warburton’s revolution at Ibrox was more appealing to him than another big pay day in England.He added: “Coming off the back of the season I have just had, there was obviously interest, but for me, it was beyond that.“I’m at the stage in my career – and I’m fortunate to be there – where I really want to focus on challenges. It’s been well documented in the past about what playing football is to me – it’s no longer a financially driven part of my life.“It’s something I have to connect with and something that gives me a real opportunity and a real challenge, and from that perspective, it was irrelevant who else was at the table as there was no greater opportunity, I didn’t feel, for what I want to do and for what this football club wants to do.
“Things in life just happen at the right time and you’re in the right place sometimes, and I feel this was a real case of that.I went away last week with Rangers at the forefront of my mind, and I just knew I had to go and do it, and it was something I had to be a part of.It’s an exciting period for the football club with what the Gaffer and footballing staff have already achieved this season. It’s a place that is full of optimism and with the club being back in the top tier of Scottish football where it belongs, you get the feeling some great days for the football club are just around the corner.”