Mancini dismisses Barton’s Barry jibe

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has hit back at claims from Joey Barton that midfielder Gareth Barry does not deserve his place in the England line-up.

Talking to French magazine So Foot, Barton had said: “Honestly, I think I’m the best [English midfielder]… Did you see the game against Germany at the World Cup? If you watch the fourth goal, when [Mesut] Ozil was up against Barry, it was like the hare and the tortoise.

“Barry’s got a very good agent. He’s also discreet and always agrees with the manager. He’s like the guy who sits in the front row and listens to the teacher.

“I certainly don’t lose any sleep when I play against him.”

Yet Barry’s club boss Mancini dismissed Barton’s claims, quoted on Eurosport as saying: “Joey Barton is a good player but Gareth Barry is a fantastic player. I can say only this. It is a situation that is not important to me.”

Barton, 28, is currently in talks with Newcastle United over a new contract, and has attracted interest from Barry’s former club Aston Villa.

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