>This stuff is hilarious and true.
“Most footballers are knobs. I meet a lot of them and they are so detached from real life it’s untrue and there was a stage when I was like that. It’s only the fact I’m grounded by the trouble I’ve been in that’s forced me away from being in the football world.
“Driving round in flash cars and changing them like you change your socks, wearing stupid diamond watches and spending money like it’s going out of fashion in the middle of a recession when some people are struggling to put food on the table for the kids – it’s not the way to do it.
Revealingly, Barton also responded to a list of his various misdemeanours by saying:
“That’s the stuff people know about – there’s stuff I got away with. I’m very fortunate, because of my profile and the job I do, and the fact I’m in the public eye, it got addressed – I was forced to address my issues, either carry on doing what you’re doing and your career is gone, or you address it.”
“I didn’t want to be famous. I love football, I want to play football. It was never for me about the cars, the women, the money – whatever people perceive to come with it.
“Whether you’re the best footballer in the world, or the best golfer or the best cricketer, you’re a human being. You might be good at that, but you might be crap at life.”