Ex-Burnley teammate insists new Rangers man Joey Barton is no diva

Burnley's Joey Barton

Lukas Jutkiewicz has said that Barton's public persona "couldn't be further from the truth" and hailed the midfielder's attitude.

Burnley's Joey Barton

Burnley striker Lukas Jutkiewicz has told the Daily Record that the real Joey Barton could not be any different to the reputation he has garnered outside of the game, and insisted that the midfielder could not be less deserving of his negative billing.

Barton has been a controversial figure throughout his career, mainly due to a serious of disciplinary issues during his time at Manchester City, Newcastle United, and Queens Park Rangers

However, the 33-year-old was the star of the show at the Clarets in the most recent season, winning the club's Player of the Year award and being named in the Championship Team of the Season for his role in leading the club to promotion to the Premier League.

Burnley's Joey Barton

It appears as if Barton has turned a corner in his career, and his signing for Rangers on a free transfer is being hailed as a huge coup for the Ibrox side on their return to top-flight football.

Jutkiewicz, who played with the midfielder at Turf Moor this season, said that the Barton he saw on a day-to-day basis could not have been more different to the man he had been braced to have to deal with.

The striker told the Daily Record: "The public persona really couldn’t be further from the truth. He’s the first to want to roll up his sleeves and put in the extra miles for the lads - for his team-mates. It’s a misconception that he’s a diva who cares about himself.

Brentford’s Alan Judge and Burnley’s Joey Barton in action


"Before I met him we all wondered if that was going to be the case having read the things that were written about him in the past. But not for one minute did I or any of the lads see that. From day one he was nothing but a positive influence on people in terms of how to go about their daily training and how to get the best out of themselves.

"He’s matured massively as the years have gone by and to a man everyone in that Burnley changing room could only speak highly of him. He’s a phenomenal team-mate, someone who puts colleagues ahead of everyone else. Rangers are lucky to have signed him. They’ve got themselves a great player."

Rangers assistant manager David Weir has already talked up the signing of Barton, and the former England international is likely to play a crucial leading role at Ibrox next season in a generally young Gers side.

Barton himself has admitted that his own personal ambition following the move is to establish himself as the best player in Scotland, and it would be no surprise to see the man who was once seen as damaged goods running the show on the blue side of Glasgow.

Burnley's Joey Barton (L) in action with Rotherham United's Jonson Clarke Harris

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