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Joey Barton ‘will NOT face FA sanction for comparing Bristol Rovers’ poor display to the Holocaust’

Bristol Rovers manager and former England midfielder Joey Barton ‘will NOT face sanction for comparing his team’s display against Newport County to the Holocaust as he did not break FA rules’

  • Joey Barton compared his team’s poor display on the weekend to the Holocaust
  • Barton’s Bristol Rovers were beaten 3-1 by Newport County over the weekend
  • The 39-year-old has been criticised by certain parts of the Jewish community
  • Neither Barton nor Bristol Rovers have commented or apologised for the term 

Joey Barton will not face a fine or a ban by comparing Bristol Rovers’ poor display against Newport County on Saturday to the Holocaust, according to reports.

Barton’s Rovers lost 3-1 over the weekend to make it three matches without a victory, with the former Newcastle and Manchester City midfielder missing defenders Cian Harries and Trevor Clarke for the match due to red cards the week before.  

The manager has refused to apologise for his comments, despite sparking outrage from the National Holocaust Centre and Museum and the Jewish Labour Movement  for his choice of words.

Joey Barton will not face a FA sanction for comparing Bristol Rovers’ defending to the Holocaust over the weekend

Barton used the term in a post-match interview after Rovers lost 3-1 to Newport County

Barton used the term in a post-match interview after Rovers lost 3-1 to Newport County

And according to the Telegraph, the Football Association – after looking into the case – will not issue a sanction to Barton as the comment does not break their rules.

The 39-year-old made the comment in an interview with Rovers’ official media channel, with the League Two club posting an edited version of the interview after the original video appeared to be taken down. 

Barton claimed in his post-match interview: ‘I said to the lads during the week, ‘the team’s almost like musical chairs.’ Someone gets in and does well but then gets suspended or injured. 

‘Someone gets in for a game, does well but then has a Holocaust, a nightmare, an absolute disaster.’ 

Barton has not apologised for using the term and Bristol Rovers have not commented on it

Barton has not apologised for using the term and Bristol Rovers have not commented on it

National Holocaust Centre and Museum trustee Dame Helen Hyde slammed Barton for the comments, claiming that the 39-year-old needs to be educated on the topic of the Holocaust and the meaning of the word. 

‘I don’t think Mr Barton knows what the word means and he is certainly not aware of the huge sadness and offence he has caused,’ she said. ‘Might I suggest he is encouraged to learn about these tragic events.’ 

Meanwhile, the Bristol Holocaust Memorial Day Steering Group added: ‘To compare the poor performance of a player or team to a Holocaust shows a lack of understanding of the true barbarism, torture and evil that was inflicted on vulnerable groups in society.

‘As one of two professional football clubs that represent the city, it is saddening that neither the football club or the manager Joey Barton has issued an unequivocal apology.’

The 39-year-old former footballer (above) has been urged to resign over the comments

The 39-year-old former footballer (above) has been urged to resign over the comments

Bristol councillor Fabian Breckels described Barton’s reference as ‘appalling’ and called on the Rovers boss to ‘consider his future’ as manager. 

It is not the first time a Holocaust reference has been made when describing a football team’s poor performance in England. 

In November 2012, Scunthorpe United manager Brian Laws came out to apologise after he claimed his side’s defending in a 4-0 loss to Doncaster was ‘as bad as the Holocaust’. 

The Holocaust administered by Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany saw around 6 millions Jews people murdered during the Second World War – around two thirds of Europe’s Jewish population – between 1941 and 1945. 

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