QPR owner Fernandes insists Barton will play in Championship if Marseille move fails

Ryan Benson
May 1, 2013
Agent: Barton keen to join Everton

QPR owner Tony Fernandes has warned Joey Barton that he will be expected to help the club's promotion fight in the Championship next season if a move to loan outfit Marseille does not materialize.

The former Manchester City and Newcastle man made the loan move to Ligue 1 in August 2012 when Mark Hughes was in charge at Loftus Road, but current manager Harry Redknapp has suggested the midfielder could yet have a future with the Rs.

Barton has aimed jibes at QPR throughout the season - most recently taking exception at some of the squad's perceived poor attitudes - but Fernandes has not ruled out the 30-year-old returning to the club next season.

"Marseille have got to put an offer in. Joey is under contract and Joey would be a very useful player for QPR," Fernandes told the club's official website. "He helped Newcastle out [of the Championship]. Some would say we lacked his fighting spirit in the midfield. But if Joey and Marseille want [the transfer], then we will talk.

"However, he is a QPR player, and is contracted to QPR. That has to be a financial deal which would have to be worked out if he wants to go to Marseille, but as far as I am concerned he is a QPR player and in the summer will come back."