Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

WATCH ME GO: BARTON; 'I Can Regain Form That Earned Me England Cap': Barton: There Is More to Come

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

WATCH ME GO: BARTON; 'I Can Regain Form That Earned Me England Cap': Barton: There Is More to Come

Article excerpt

Byline: LEE RYDER

JOEY BARTON has assured the Toon Army that the best is yet to come.

The Toon midfielder captained the Magpies in the 3-0 friendly win over Carlisle United and believes that the coming season will finally result in his best form for Newcastle United after three injury-jinxed, problem-ravaged years.

Barton spent most of last season mainly on the sidelines with a foot injury, but the midfielder got through 45 minutes at Brunton Park comfortably and was asked to skipper the Toon in Cumbria.

Ironically, Barton's last stint as captain was at Carlisle, when he picked up a broken foot in only his second game for Newcastle.

Now, though, he is aiming to reproduce the form that made him an England international.

He told the Chronicle: "I don't know what role I will have next season - but I'm ready to do whatever is required.

"Whatever role I'm asked to play, I'll be up for it.

"I've played out wide on a couple of occasions last year.

"Wherever I'm asked, I'll play, I just want to be part of this squad.

"Hopefully I can bring something positive and push on from last season.

"At the end of the day I was an England international as a box-tobox midfield player. "I don't say this lightly, but I'm a much more rounded footballer now than I was when I first signed for this club.

"Injuries have restricted my chances to show that.

"If I can sustain fitness for a long period of time I'm very confident of finding the form that got me in the England squad."

Barton was also happy to experience better memories in Cumbria than three years ago, when he sustained a broken foot in only his second game for the Mags.

He said: "It was better memories - they weren't bad memories last time, it was just a shame because I wanted to get my Newcastle career off to a flier, and it was disappointing.

"But it was nice to come back this time as part of a strong squad.

"Everybody got what they deserved today.

"And this time for me there were no hiccups, touch wood."

Now Barton is confident the glory days can return for both himself and United.

He said: "For me, first and foremost I want to do well for Newcastle United. …

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