Joey Barton has been made available on a free transfer, Newcastle have confirmed on their official website.

Relations between the club and the outspoken midfielder had already been strained following a breakdown of contract talks over the summer, with Barton taking to Twitter to air his frustrations.

The 28-year-old did so again following Sunday's friendly defeat at Leeds, before saying he would make an announcement on his future at 4pm on Monday. But the club have pre-empted whatever Barton was going to say by announcing he is able to leave the club a year out from the end of his contract.

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