Ligue 1

Marseille, Joey Barton talking deal

August 29, 2012
By ESPN.com news services

Marseille coach Elie Baup on Wednesday confirmed his club is in talks with Queens Park Rangers midfielder Joey Barton but said a deal has yet to be agreed upon.

The 29-year-old has been linked with a loan move to the Ligue 1 outfit in recent weeks, having been suspended at Loftus Road.

Rangers manager Mark Hughes did not even give him a squad number for this season following his red card against Manchester City on the last day of last term, and subsequent 12-match ban.

Barton flew to France on Wednesday and Baup told OM's website: "Joey Barton is in the building. I don't know if it will be finalized today or how it will turn out."

Baup praised Barton's qualities as a player but warned that if he is to become part of the team at the Stade Velodrome then the controversial Liverpudlian must fit into the team ethic.

"He has to be part of the project, respect the team rules and work in the greater interest of the team. He must comply with these standards," he said. "His career indicates that he knows that already. And a player of character is often necessary."

Barton's trip to Marseille comes just a day after he tweeted that his talks with the club had fallen through, creating speculation that a move to France wasn't going to happen.

Information from the Press Association was used in this report.