Joey Barton was right about me - new Linnets signing

Reading's Josh Barrett (left) and Chelsea's Kenedy battle for the ball during the pre-season friendl

Josh Barrett, left, in action for Reading in a pre-season friendly against Chelsea in July, 2019 - Credit: PA

New King’s Lynn Town signing Josh Barrett says his former boss Joey Barton was “spot on” in his frank assessment of the midfielder’s future. 

Barrett, 23, parted company with Barton’s Bristol Rovers last month and this week signed a two-year deal with Lynn. 

“He’s clearly got the talent for that, it’s just can he knuckle down and show the discipline and desire needed to play in the league,” said Barton on Barrett’s exit. 

"It saves the club a bit of money and it allows Josh [Barrett] to get on with his career because he’s a talented boy no doubt about that, but he’s got a lot of work to do to salvage his career as a professional footballer.” 

Painful words, perhaps, but Barrett – who signed for Rovers in January 2020 from Reading - believes his controversial former boss is right. 

“Obviously me getting to know him he is not what everyone thinks he is,” said Barrett. “He is a good guy and I think I was able to talk to him personally, because he knew what was going on with me, the other things that were going on, so he was brilliant with me.  

“As soon as he came in he said he wanted me to get back to playing, but obviously I was struggling with my injuries. 

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“It was a shame it didn’t really work out because with his character he would have liked somebody like me. But he is spot on. I can’t disagree with that, I had a talk with him when I left Bristol – he sent me a text and I had a conversation with him, so what he said is probably bang on – just getting back to it and being able to play as much as possible and forget about all the injuries. With Rovers the injury side was always there, it was hard to get over.” 

Barrett made five Championship appearances for Reading in 2019-20 before his nightmare spell at Rovers, and says his ambition is to return to the Football League – starting with the Linnets. 

“For someone who is looking to rebuild and hopefully get back into the league it is a great place to come and develop,” he said.  

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