STUART Pearce and Manchester City have invested a lot of time, energy and care into the wellbeing of Joey Barton.
With this in mind, I can't help but feel his decision to hand in a transfer request was ill-advised.
I've followed the story in the media and it has been reported that Barton turned down a double-your-money £28,000-a-week contract offer. As a result, he was jeered by City supporters in Wednesday night's home match against Newcastle.
Those jeers had turned to cheers by the end of the night after Barton put in a committed display and helped his team to a 3-0 win.
His actions earlier this week were probably a spontaneous, gut reaction.
These things happen but, if you're a Premiership footballer plying your trade in the glare of the media spotlight, it gets dealt with in the papers.
I'm sure both parties are good for each other and I hope they will sit down and work this out.
I know many fans of my old club were incensed by Barton's actions, but sometimes these matters get exaggerated by the national press.
I can only say that, as a former player, when you're on the field of play, you don't think about your pay packet.
You think about your next pass, your next challenge or your next goal.
Whether or not somebody else in the team is on more money than you doesn't go through your mind.
Football is an industry where there is money available for being successful and the biggest disappointment for me is when I see people not working hard enough to improve themselves.
For footballers, the rewards are there - and sometimes on a Sunday you sit back and think how lucky you are.