Glasgow Rangers boss Mark Warburton is hoping to bring the midfielder to Ibrox.
A separate report in the Record claimed that the Gers are closing in on completing a deal with the midfielder set to agree a two-year contract at Ibrox.
And former Light Blues captain Ferguson believes that he is exactly the kind of arrival that will help Mark Warburton's side as they prepare for their first campaign back in the Scottish Premiership, and explained how his presence will benefit the squad.
"Don't fall for this idea he's just a scrapper because I can tell you Joey can play a bit as well. It's something that can be forgotten at times when the more controversial stuff is in the headlines," he told the Record.
"He's great with the ball at his feet and knows how to run a game.
"But you know you are in a fight when you are up against him and that's exactly what Rangers need next season.
"They've been lightweight in the middle but Joey will bring that bit of steel."
Barton's ability to adopt either a physical or more composed style would mean that he will be able to play a prominent role in any game that the Gers face next season.
In the games when Warburton's men are deemed to be the favourites, the former Manchester City man can use his quality on the ball to dictate the tempo and ensure that the side remain on top.
While when Rangers go into any of their fixtures as outsiders, his fighting spirit and ability to break up play will ensure that the likes of Barrie McKay and Martyn Waghorn still have the freedom to concentrate on getting forward, safe in the knowledge that Barton is providing all the support the defence could need.