Queens Park Rangers 'bad-boy' Joey Barton will once again sport the black and white kit of Newcastle United for Steve Harper's testimonial.
Many former Magpies will play in the match to celebrate the veteran goalkeepers 20-year spell with the club, which takes place on Wednesday evening at St James' Park.
Toon legends David Ginola, Nolberto Solano and Peter Beardsley will play alongside Barton against an A.C. Milan legends 11 to raise money for three different charities.
"Steve epitomised Newcastle United when I was there. He gave most of us an insight into what it meant and what it took to play for the football club," said Barton.
Barton has proved a hugely-controversial figure throughout his career but was evidently loved by the Newcastle fans. The Liverpudlian spent four years at the club after joining in 2007, Harper's 14th year at that time. The goalkeeper helped all new recruits settle-in and Barton remembers his presence.
"Steve was Mr Newcastle. He grew up in the area, came through the ranks and was there for a long time with a lot of different managers so nobody knew the club better than him," Barton added.
Since leaving St James' Park, Barton has been involved in numerous controversies, some funny, some not so funny. His strange French accent in his first Olympique Marseille press conference made all-who-watched cringe, but at least it wasn't as outrageous as his parade of violence in QPR's 3-2 defeat on the final day of the 2011/12 season against Manchester City.
It will be amusing to see if Barton can maintain that 'friendly' pace in Wednesdays's game and not get himself sent off. The midfielder is a friend of the Hull City goalkeeper and has expressed his honour at being invited to the event.
"When I was asked to go back up and be part of this game, I was honoured. It'll be a great night against an AC Milan legends side which includes some of my heroes when I was growing up. It will be the first time I've been back to play an actual game at St. James' Park. I've been back with QPR but I was suspended so it'll be nice to go back and get a run out on my old stomping ground; a place where I have really fond memories," he concluded.
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