Rangers today confirmed the worst-kept secret in Scottish football; Joey Barton is now officially a Rangers player, although he will not formally hook up with the squad till late July.
It goes without saying this is a truly sensational signing, especially given Rangers’ recent travails in the SPFL – from Kyle Hutton to Joey Barton; how times have changed.
Incredible credit goes to Mark Warburton, David Weir and of course Frank McParland for sterling work in securing the former Man City anchor’s signature – but as the midfielder says himself;
“I also wanted to speak to my friends and family, but I knew instantly that I was going to come here. Once I had walked into the building and seen what this club is about, I knew it would fit perfectly with what I wanted.”
This was never in doubt from the start in Barton’s mind, although one suspects the little rascal has had a lot of fun over the past 10 days with the ‘will he won’t he’ saga around him.
Rangers sold itself to Barton, and he immediately knew what he wanted to do. As he says, it is not about money, especially given the game of football has been exceptionally good to him and his family; it is about something different. Something fresh. A new challenge, and a newly-promoted Rangers is certainly that.
Rangers’ midfield next season is now Joey Barton, Jordan Rossiter, Matt Crooks, and Josh Windass, with Jason Holt and Andy Halliday already here.
The depth available to the Magic Hat is in abundance now, and we no longer have to complain we lack a defensive midfielder – we have three, maybe four players capable of playing there now.
From Ian Black and Kyle Hutton to Joey Barton and Jordan Rossiter.