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Oct 4, 2012

QPR: We've moved on from Barton

QPR chief executive Philip Beard has defended the signing of Joey Barton last season, but said the club had "moved on" and may now look to make his loan move to Marseille permanent.

• Brewin: This year's crisis club?

Barton joined Rangers from Newcastle United in August 2011 and endured an erratic season that ended in a 12-game ban being imposed by the FA after he was sent off for violent conduct against Manchester City on the final day.

He was subsequently left out of manager Mark Hughes' 25-man squad for this season and had little option but to look elsewhere.

"Everything is possible," Beard said. "Joey is ultimately still a QPR employee. A lot will depend on how his move works out, and we'll look at it at the end of the season.

"We bought Joey when Neil [Warnock] was the manager and we needed to bring players in. We did with the right intentions, but I think it is fair to say that the club has moved on significantly in the last 12 months.

"Joey is a good player and will do a good job for the right team. If he can manage the other side of his life, then he has two or three good years left to offer.

"I'm not looking beyond this season, but it is good that Mark feels he has ownership of a squad which he has put together."

Beard said Barton "had one or two options in the Championship which were not suitable for us or him", adding that the agreement to loan him to Marseille "works for everybody".

"When you're in any situation, particularly in football, you want the right mood and spirit in the squad. I think that's what Mark wants," he explained.

"You look at who he has brought in, his style both as a manager and a player. He has a squad who will work together, and there is no player bigger than the team."

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