Newcastle suspend Barton

2009-05-05 12:22

England -Joey Barton has been suspended "until further notice" by Newcastle United in a move that looks set to signal the end to the controversial midfielder's career at the club.

The announcement followed reports of a dressing-room confrontation with temporary manager Alan Shearer in the wake of Sunday's 3-0 defeat by Liverpool at Anfield.

Shearer had publicly accused Barton of letting himself and the club down by getting himself sent off in the closing stages of the match for a reckless challenge on Xabi Alonso.

The red card ensured Barton will miss Newcastle's three remaining matches this season, which will determine whether or not the club keeps its place in the Premier League.

Barton, 26, has missed most of this campaign through a combination of injury and suspension after being given a second chance at the club following two assault convictions last year.

The midfielder spent 74 days in prison for assaulting a 16-year-old in Liverpool city centre in December 2007 and received a four-month suspended sentence for a training ground attack on former Manchester City team-mate Ousmane Dabo, which left his victim with a fractured eye socket.

The Football Association subsequently banned Barton for six matches over the Dabo incident.