Should Joey Barton be in the England squad?
Imagine for a moment that you’re interviewing for a job at a bakery. You’re the best person for that job – the other guys going for it are past it or too inexperienced to do the baking as well as you can.
But you don’t get the job because the chief baker is worried about your influence on the children who come in for their yum yums – you’ve got a criminal record and you said some uncomplimentary things about the other bakers during your work experience placement four years ago. Damn it.
Anyway, that rather strained metaphor leads us seamlessly to the crux of the matter – should Joey Barton be allowed to play for England?
If form was the only consideration, then surely Barton would be in the latest England squad. But he’s not. Sadly for him, you have to be a clean cut role model like John Terry or Wayne Rooney to be in the frame for an international call-up.
Now, The Spoiler isn’t suggesting that rutting away with a teammate’s ex or a lady of the night is anywhere near as bad as a six month sentence for assault or the numerous other ‘misdemeanours’, but they’re hardly perfect people to look up to.
Barton has served his time and everyone can change, can’t they? Can’t they?
Double standards? Or should Barton continue be punished for his crimes?
Let us know with a vote so your informed ideas can be reduced to a number. If you’re not comfortable with that, add a little comment as well…