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12th Oct 2016

Watch as Rangers press conference comes to a halt following Joey Barton question

Bizarre scenes...

Robert Redmond

Joey Barton really has been at the centre of a lot of controversy since, well since his career began. But even by his own standards, the last few months have been eventful.

Barton vowed to prove he was the best player in Scotland when he joined Rangers during the summer, and took aim at Scott Brown and Brendan Rodgers, saying the Celtic captain wasn’t on his level as a player, and that Rodgers was experiencing a mid-life crisis.

Celtic then hammered Rangers 5-1 last month. The following day Barton was suspended from the club following a bust-up in training with teammate Andy Halliday.

That three-week ban was extended for a further week following allegations Barton gambled on 44 games, and a hearing has been set by the Scottish Football Association.

It looks increasingly unlikely that the 34-year-old will play again for the Glasgow club, and it appears to have reached the stage where any mention of his name around Ibrox is forbidden.

At least in press conferences anyway.

On Wednesday afternoon, Mark Warburton was asked if there was any update on Barton’s situation with the club. The Rangers’ manager batted away a few questions on the topic, declining to comment, but the club’s PR advisor had heard enough.

Jim Traynor stepped in, urging for the next question to be asked, and words are exchanged between a reporter and the Rangers’ employee.

All the while Warburton sat looking bemused. The press conference is then halted, Warburton leaves the room only to return 20 minutes later and resume proceedings. No further Barton questions were allowed.