New Burnley signing Joey Barton has slammed “lazy” Premier League clubs who opted not to snare the signature of the former Queens Park Rangers man.
Barton was released by QPR at the end of his contract, and despite interest from West Ham United, the former England international was denied a return to the top flight.
The 33-year-old believes he is still good enough to play in the Premier League and that his controversial past prevented clubs from signing him this summer.
“I felt I did well enough last year in a side that was struggling to earn another crack at that league,” Barton is quoted as saying by The Mirror.
“My playing ability is good enough to cope in that league. But people then start worrying about the baggage and how I’ll contribute to the group or how I’ll react if I’m not playing, which is lazy on their behalf.
“If you’re a Premier League club and you had the opportunity to take me on a free transfer, I think it’s a no-brainer. If you’re anyone from 10th down, it’s a no-brainer.
“But they are lazy in their recruitment, they don’t do their homework, they tune into things you did in 2006 and 2007 rather than look at what’s going on.”
Barton has made 255 Premier League appearances in stints with Manchester City, Newcastle United and Queens Park Rangers, but will spend this season in the Championship with Burnley.
Despite Barton’s troubled past, the Huyton-born midfielder will add plenty of experience and leadership to the Clarets midfield as Sean Dyche’s side look to bounce straight back into the Premier League.
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