Joey Barton: Chelsea’s Eden Hazard was right to hit Charlie Morgan because he’s rich
JOEY ‘Allo Allo’ Barton is writing in the Times about Eden Harard’s kick on Swansea ballboy (he’s 17) Charlie Morgan. Like one Anorak readers, Barton blames bad technique and modern training methods of Hazard’s inability to launch Morgan into the upper tier of the Liberty Stadium. To which we would add, soft boots.
Before we all get too carried away, we should think about the context of the incident and dish out retribution fair and square.
Kicking a prone teenager in the ribs needs context. Barton may care to add that ballboys must be excited about being involved in the cut and thrust of the match. High time ballboys were seen as part of the game’s fabric and treated with the respect offialdom deserves. Look out for Wayne Rooney telling one to “f*ck off”, Theo Walcott rushing over to high five the ballboy when he scores, and Luis Saurez tripping over a ballboy’s face and appealing for a penalty.
Firstly, the label “ballboy”. Let’s cut through the sensationalism— we’re not talking a 12-year-old, as implied by the Swansea captain’s comment: “I saw Hazard kick him in the ribs. You can’t do that to a kid.” Rubbish. This a young guy aged 17, big enough, it appears, to be living the adult high life if you look at his Twitter feed.
That Twitter feed shows Morgan sitting in a plane seat and wearing a baseball cap. If you feel like kicking him, wear a football kit and go for it. If you’re John Terry, you may prefer to shag Morgan’s girlfriend.
Barton then asks:
Have we seen bruising or a scar?
No. The lad will have to make you with a YouTube video and tweets of the magic moment. Here’s hoping the Morgan grandkids have old-style players able broadcast the footage.
Maybe it was to do with a pre-match tweet sent by our “boy”: “The king of all ballboys is back making his final appearance #needed #for #timewasting.” All this prior to the incident. So, was our wealthy rich “kid”, with a taste for Veuve Clicquot and heir to a hotel empire, predicting doing something that would cause a reaction?
To recap. It wasn’t an offence because the victim is 17, his father is rich, there are no scars, he supports Swansea and Hazard was at work. Morgan is also an “imbecile“.
I don’t think Hazard should have been sent off. If the “ballperson” had thrown the ball back as he was employed to do, instead of trying to mount it, then Hazard would have had no reason to retrieve it from under him in the frantic, closing minutes of the game. Yes, Hazard maybe should know better as a pro in the spotlight — and remember this is a man trying to help his club reach a cup final, someone paid an awful lot of money to ensure team success.
Forget the police. Morgan needs to take Hazard to an industrial tribunal…