Joey Barton's Sunderland verdict and why he thinks Adam Matthews should have seen red

'They were lucky today'.

Saturday, 8th September 2018, 6:44 pm
Updated Saturday, 8th September 2018, 6:51 pm
Joey Barton and Jack Ross exchange words on the touchline

Joey Barton had tongue firmly in cheek at times after this 1-1 draw, also joking that Newcastle would have secured a 30 thousand attendance had they been in League One.

The Fleetwood Town boss was happy to play the pantomime villain but he also praised Sunderland as a 'good club' and expects them to challenge for the league under Jack Ross.

Joey Barton and Jack Ross exchange words on the touchline

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He was adamant, however, that his team were the better side.

He also said that Adam Matthews should have been shown a second yellow

"I said in the build-up that I thought we were the better side and anyone who was here today, just watch it back," he said.

"We had the best chances, a penalty, good save by the keeper but a confusion in the build-up from our perspective.

"They're a good side, I'm not taking anything away from them. They had 15 minutes before the break and a ten minute spell at the end where our keeper has had to make a good save, we've had to put bodies on the line.

"It was a really good game, played in the right spirit.

"The ref was good, although he should have sent their lad off when he gave away a penalty, he was on a yellow. Techincally it should have been off.

"But look it was a good game, good atmosphere," he added.

"It was a fantastic occasion, it's a good football club. I've enjoyed a healthy rivalry with them over the years, it's sad to seem them in the state they've been in but Jack Ross has done a fantastic job so far.

"The club seems to be moving in the right direction.

"But I thought we were the better side, Sunderland fans will never admit it because of my connections, but they'll go home knowing we're a proper side.

"And they have a proper side too, I've said to the lads, this could be a six-pointer come May."

Jack Ross responded by saying that both sides had good chances to win the game.