Sports minister Stuart Andrew criticizes Joey Barton’s offensive remarks on women in football; government action is possible.
Over the past week, Joey Barton targeted women in football, reaching a low point with a reprehensible post comparing Eniola Aluko and Lucy Ward to notorious serial killers Fred and Rose West. ITV, the employer of both Aluko and Ward, denounced the comments. Despite this, Barton persisted in his stance, prompting government minister Andrew to join the growing chorus of disapproval.
According to BBC Sport, when asked if he would condemn Barton’s behavior, Andrew responded: “Yes, I would. These are comments that open the floodgates for abuse and that’s not acceptable.
“I’m always wary in these situations that these sort of people want the oxygen and I don’t want to fuel that. I want to put on record my thanks for the amazing contribution that women and girls make to football and sport more generally.”
When questioned about his willingness to engage directly with social media companies, he answered: “I can happily do so.
Since his dismissal by Bristol Rovers in October, Joey Barton has been unemployed. During his tenure, he only managed to lead the club to 16th place after 13 games of the season. Before joining Bristol Rovers, Barton was the manager of Fleetwood Town.
Barton seems to be using his comments as a means to promote a podcast. Whether anyone will be willing to listen to it following his controversial outbursts remains uncertain. Moreover, he might face government sanctions given the strong response from Minister Andrew.