Joey Barton’s never been afraid to publicly state controversial opinions, but his latest tirade will certainly have the majority of Manchester United fans reaching for the pitch forks.
The QPR midfielder, who has been in and out of trouble frequently during his career, has sensationally claimed that Sir Alex Ferguson may actually want David Moyes to flop as his successor so that he can come back for another hoorah.
According to the Daily Star, Barton not only went on record as stating that he believes Ferguson’s retirement could all be part of a premeditated plan, but also that the former Old Trafford boss handed the reins over when he did because he knew the team wasn’t good enough to compete anymore.
“Ferguson has long been a master manipulator. I almost get the feeling he wants David Moyes not to do so well at United so he can come back and save the day,” Barton said.
“That wouldn’t surprise me, hence the reason he’s everywhere. When you’ve had that many years of power and control it is difficult to let go. He threatened to retire for about ten years before he actually finished up.
“Moyes walked into tough situation. Fergie was smart enough to think, ‘Somehow I’ve won the league against all these teams with all this money, I’m not going to be able to do it again. This is my time to bow out at the top'.
“He left Moyes an incredibly difficult task.”
Moyes has seen his United side falter frequently this year and his position is eyed with increasing scrutiny with every poor result. Following the 3-1 loss to Chelsea on Sunday the reigning Premier League champions sit 7th, 14 points behind league leaders Arsenal.
Though many will take Barton's comments with a pinch of salt, whilst the unrest around Old Trafford continues to grow there is the theory that Ferguson could be tempted to return to save his side's season.
What do you think? Comment below and let us know.