Bristol Rovers are reportedly in advanced talks with potential a new manager following the departure of Paul Tisdale on the 10th of February.
The club currently sit 20th in the League One table, taking a total of 24 points from 26 games played, and looked to be firmly in a relegation battle.
Now they are looking at finding a replacement with Joey Barton looking set to become their new boss, weeks after leaving Fleetwood Town.
– Joey Barton is in advanced talks to become the new Bristol Rovers manager.🗣
— Football Insider (@footyinsider247) February 16, 2021
The 38-year-old is the strong favourite to take over the vacant Bristol Rovers post after a breakthrough in negotiations at the Memorial Ground.
A source at the club has told Football Insider that Barton is expected to be offered the job and may be appointed within days, though it won’t be before their game on Tuesday.
Tisdale was sacked on the 10th of February after less than three months in charge, winning just five of his 19 games in charge to leave the club in danger of relegation.
Head of recruitment Tommy Widdrington has been on caretaker duty since his dismissal and will remain in charge of first-team affairs until a successor is appointed – fans also were pleading that he wouldn’t be appointed.
Barton is without a club after he was dismissed from his post at Fleetwood Town on the 4th of January following disagreements with Ched Evans and owner Andy Pilley.
The ex-Manchester City and Newcastle midfielder won 54 of his 128 matches in charge of the Cod Army and led the club to the League One playoff places last season.
However, Fleetwood missed out on promotion after a 6-3 aggregate loss to Wycombe Wanderers in the semi finals.
He has spoken of his desire to manage Newcastle one day, as he revealed what went wrong at Fleetwood.
“When you leave and it doesn’t go so well you think you’ve been removed for the wrong reasons,” he said.
“He was the brilliant (the chairman). He gave me an enormous opportunity probably when no-one else in world football would. It was always going to be difficult to get an opportunity with my rap sheet. In my mind I was going to go in with Dyche-y (at Burnley) and do an apprenticeship.”
Barton said that he left Fleetwood after feeling owner and chairman Andy Pilley wanted to dictate transfer and team matters. He said they both didn’t speak for ten days before he was fired and there became a “disconnect”.
Explaining what led to his departure, he said: “The chairman was good as gold (at first) in that he didn’t force his opinion on me as a senior chairman and he let me make a few of my own decisions in terms of transfers – some good, some bad, some indifferent. We finished in the play-offs in the second season.
“We came back this time and were trying to rebuild the side and I think what happened was he went into a transfer embargo (he took out an £800,000 loan from the EFL because of coronavirus). A few players were at the end of their cycle – Ched Evans, I’d had enough of him. He just wasn’t performing on the pitch and I felt we needed to improve in that position.
“When I went to speak to him, he let me know about the embargo which was a lot longer after it had happened than I felt I should have known about it. He said ‘We’re not going to go in the market or come out of the embargo’. For me I felt to get in the play-offs, and that’s what I wanted to do – I want to manage in the Premier League, we all do, that’s where I played.
“Where we were, eight points out of the play-offs if we get a couple of bodies in we’ll be there or thereabouts. We don’t need Sergio Aguero but he disagreed and felt we should have gone with the younger players. I was trying to say ‘They’re young players, we’re growing them but they’re not ready yet’.
“It got to the point where we both couldn’t be right.”
Barton also said there were disagreements about signing a new contract. “Six weeks before I was sacked I was offered a three year extension (in December) and I said ‘All my staff are on three months’ termination’. Can you sort that out? If you do I’ll sort a new deal,” he explained.
He added that was not resolved either, which led to a breakdown.
Fans reacted with Bristol Rovers in advanced talks with their potential new manager…
@WayneMClarke4: Tbh I’m not a huge fan of Joey Barton but if he’s the next rovers manager, I would give him a chance. Beside I would rather have him as a manager instead of James Dowberry because I honestly think he would save Rovers from relegation.
@RNelly__: Get in! Scenes if this happens. HMS Piss the league back on next season.
@Ciaran_Hart1: Hating Joey Barton even more confirmed
@brfcharryy2: what a time to be alive
@TS1996BCFC: Can we give Bristol Rovers permission to speak to Karanka please
@pieman80: This is shit for us. He’ll sort them right out #stfc Shrewsbury and now Rovers out the relegation running with good managerial appointments
@Janerthered: Takes scraping the bottom of the barrel to new depths…
@Louisgough8: Barton shithousing gas
@RokerPark150705: Madness… 😬 Barton belongs in prison, not in football management… 🔔🔚
@richieknott: God help us! #utg
@toyntonbirder: Insane. He’s currently facing assault charges. I don’t want him anywhere near my club. Then again he’ll be gone by the summer. #UTG
@AbsolomHaydn: Everyone calling him an arsehole yet he’s a good coach, a good manager! Fleetwood we’re pushing for the championship with him!
@hayne_charlie: Announce it after we win tonight…
@NBarham70: Good luck with that…mans a complete bellend
@RendallAlfie: Get in! Fantastic appointment if this happens
@ichemeler: He’s an arsehole good luck
@Rhyswatkins98: Love to see the club appointing a man who has an upcoming court trial for assault, kept it classy lads
@SirTedGoat: Wael wael wael happy days utg
@callow_lee: This is gonna end in tears mind…! #UTG
@rikbarker: I’m every bit as excited about the possibility of us getting Joey Barton as I was about us possibly signing Ched Evans. As a community club can we not just have a rule to never hire awful humans? hope this is as accurate as their usual Twitter predictions.
@AllotmentGas: If Joey Barton is the answer, I dread what the question is #UTG
@keyfordtri: @Joey7Barton remember we want a Bristolian accent in the press conference Joey! Utg
@BristolBomber: Scenes when Joey Barton puts on a fake Bristol accent in his first press conference
@djrsummers: Joey Barton’s absolutely shithousing horrible bastard blue and white army. Got a ring to it to be fair.