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Sport Joey Barton assault trial: Coach 'found boss lying bloodied in tunnel'

20:37  30 november  2021
20:37  30 november  2021 Source:   dailymail.co.uk

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A football coach found his manager lying bloodied in the tunnel of a stadium after an attack allegedly carried out by ex-England star Joey Barton, a court today heard.

Former Barnsley assistant boss Christopher Stern told jury members how he saw his then manager Daniel Stendel with damaged teeth and 'blood coming out of his nose and mouth' following the April 2019 incident.

Prosecutors allege that Barton, 39, then the manager of League One side Fleetwood, knocked into Mr Stendel in the tunnel at the end of a league match with Barnsley at Oakwell stadium.

Jury members previously heard that Mr Stendel, 47, fell forward and hit a metal pole during the incident.

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Mr Stendel - now the manager of French side Nancy - suffered facial injuries and bruising to his arms.

Barton denies a charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and is on trial at Sheffield Crown Court.

Today Mr Stern, who was Mr Stendel's number two at the time of the incident, gave evidence in the trial.

He told the court he did not see how his boss received the injuries but came to his aid soon afterwards.

He said: 'He was in shock. There was blood coming out of his mouth and nose. His front teeth were backwards.'

The jury has been told by prosecutors of tensions between the coaching staffs at Barnsley and Fleetwood.

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Jury members previously heard the tension began at the fixture at Fleetwood in September 2018 and resurfaced at the match in April at Barnsley's Oakwell ground.

Mr Stern, a UEFA B-Level licenced coach, agreed that he was issued with a yellow card during the first of these games.

He was asked about events in the second half of the return match at Barnsley in April.

Mr Stern agreed that he celebrated enthusiastically after Barnsley went 3-1 up.

He said: 'I was screaming "yes", "yeah".'

He said he turned to the Fleetwood Town technical area as he celebrated in an 'emotional reflex'.

Simon Csoka QC, defending Barton, said to Mr Stern: 'It was a deliberate decision by you to go over and effectively celebrate in their faces.'

He replied: 'There was no intention to deliberately upset.'

On Monday, Mr Stendel told the jury how he was walking down the tunnel after Barnsley's 4-2 victory when he was knocked over by a push from behind.

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He said his face hit the tunnel structure and described how he looked up to see that Barton was the only person in front of him.

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Mr Stendel described how former England international Barton had been aggressive towards him at the end of the match, during the traditional handshake.

Barnsley performance analyst intern Nathan Kirby told the jury that he saw Barton run past him and shoulder-barge Mr Stendel.

Barton, a former Manchester City, Newcastle and Queen's Park Rangers star who made one appearance for England, denies one count of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

Barton, who is now Bristol Rovers manager, sat in the dock on Tuesday wearing a dark-grey suit over a white shirt with a dark-coloured tie.

Judge Jeremy Richardson QC discharged one member of the jury on Tuesday morning leaving six women and five men to try the case.

The judge told the jurors they would probably retire to consider their verdict on Thursday. The trial continues.

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