Pardew unsure on Barton
Alan Pardew speaks to ESPN
Barton was placed on the transfer list, for free, just under two weeks ago after a spat with Pardew during a pre-season game against Leeds was followed by a Twitter rant against the board. The two parties declared a truce, and Pardew is considering putting him in the team to face Arsenal, which is live on ESPN in the UK.
The midfielder was an inspirational figure in the Premier League game against the Gunners last season, helping to transform a 4-0 half-time deficit into a 4-4 draw.
When asked about Barton's involvement in the game, Pardew told ESPN: "At the moment that is in the air a little bit.
"I've made it clear to Joey our relationship is fairly sound. He knows that if he plays for me then I want Joey Barton playing for me - not 80-90% Joey Barton, 100%, and that's the only way he can play.
"At the moment I think Joey's a little bit confused about what he wants to do. Until such time that he gives me clarity that he wants to stay at this club, and that will be until the next window or to the end of the year, when he makes his mind up on what he wants to do on that side, then I'll include him because he's a great player - make no mistake about that.
"You want your best players as a football manager but what happened and instigated what we have now was for me the correct move. I had to let him know that we were not going to accept what happened at Leeds where perhaps he wasn't focusing for us and particularly on the game.
"I think he's aware of that and we both made mistakes that day and without some outside sources being involved I think we would have resolved it quite quickly and all moved on. But we are now where we are and I think it will be resolved certainly before Sunderland for sure.
"It's not often you don't have a long chat with Joey, it's usually a long chat. I genuinely like Joey and this Twitter business and everything else that's gone on ... some of the things he puts on there make me laugh, sometimes I think he's spot on, sometimes I think he makes big mistakes but I've expressed that to him, so I'm not telling you any different."
Pardew said he was not Twitter himself but added: "There's probably a few accounts in my name; like most managers we get something put next to our name.
"It's something that I talked about earlier in the week and I think it's very dangerous for footballers to be on there because you might breach your contract if you talk in any shape or form about the club. It's something that the Premier League really should organise and sort out.
"Not only Joey, other players have been documented getting in trouble and so many more will unless we try and get some clarity with the rules - what can be said and what can't be said."
• Catch action from every Barclays Premier League match on your mobile for FREE on the enhanced ESPN Goals app (UK only).