Joey Barton latest: Police appeal for Barnsley tunnel incident witnesses

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Barnsley staff are staying tight-lipped over the ugly scenes that marred their victory over Fleetwood Town last Saturday.

Fleetwood manager Joey Barton is alleged to have assaulted Barnsley manager Daniel Stendel in the tunnel after the Reds won 4-2.

Dale Tonge: Tight-lipped.

Dale Tonge: Tight-lipped.

South Yorkshire Police are investigating the incident.

Barnsley announced on Tuesday that they had lodged formal complaints with both the English Football League and the Football Association over the alleged incident.

At their weekly press conference on Wednesday, assistant manager Dale Tonge read a brief statement in which he said the club would not be commenting on the situation.

Pushed to expand, he said it was a situation no different to any other footballing situation and that Stendel was in “great spirits”.

It’s not been a distraction. The gaffer is a professional, it is something that happens day in, day out in football.

Dale Tonge

“Unfortunately, I won’t be able to comment on the alleged incident while the police investigation is ongoing,” said Tonge.

“Obviously the club has released a statement so we’ve got to leave it there.

“Certain things happen in football but again unfortunately I cannot comment.

“It’s not been a distraction. The gaffer is a professional, it is something that happens day in, day out in football.”

Tonge generally conducts pre-match briefings for the German head coach, who was in charge of training ahead of Friday’s home game versus Shrewsbury Town.

Goalkeeper Adam Davies added: “As players we’ve just stuck to what we do. We just concentrate on the football.”

Police, meanwhile, have appealed for fans who may have filmed an alleged confrontation between Barton and Stendel to come forward.

South Yorkshire Police launched an investigation into the alleged incident in the players’ tunnel on Saturday and now they are calling for witnesses who may have captured what happened on mobile phones to assist.

A South Yorkshire Police statement said: “Police investigating reports of an assault at Barnsley Football Club on Saturday 13 April are appealing for witnesses as enquiries continue.

“The incident is believed to have taken place in the tunnel around 5pm, following the conclusion of Barnsley’s match against Fleetwood Town, and left one man with facial injuries.

“At this time, no arrests have been made in connection with the incident.

“Were you at the game on Saturday with a view, or in the area, of the tunnel? Did you see what happened?

“Officers are particularly keen to speak to anyone who may have caught the incident on camera or who may have any mobile phone footage immediately before or after the incident occurred.

“If you think you can help, please call 101 quoting incident number 326 of 13 April 2019.”