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Prem Forecaster: The relegation race

Premier League
By ESPN Staff

Barton agent blasts City over paper talk

Manchester City's hopes of tying Joey Barton to a new long-term deal have been temporarily put on hold while a row is resolved with agent Willie McKay.

McKay is understood to be demanding a fee of around £100,000 for the renegotiation of midfielder Barton's contract, which has angered City officials.

Although refusing to comment on the issue, it is believed they regard the bill as excessive, and are at present holding talks with McKay in the hope he will reduce his demands.

With that ongoing, it means Barton's four-year extension will not be signed, and with McKay unhappy such details have come to light.

Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, McKay said: 'It's just propaganda and I am fed-up with it. I'm trying to do my best for Barton.

'I brought in Nicolas Anelka, Ali Benarbia, Daniel van Buyten, Marc-Vivien Foe and Antoine Sibierski into City.

'It is bang out of order for information like this to go public. It's unprofessional.

'They're just having a pop.'

McKay, though, refused to justify the apparent fee other than to say the renegotiation talks 'have not been easy'.

He added: 'I could have got him [Barton] £15,000 or £20,000 more than City have offered, but Joey just doesn't want the hassle.'

City, meanwhile, should conclude the £1.5million deal for Bernardo Corradi from Valencia within the next 24 hours.