Joey Barton will discover in the next two weeks whether he has a future at QPR.
The club last night confirmed they would not appeal the 12-match ban handed down in response to his sending-off and subsequent actions in the defeat to Manchester City on the final day of the Barclays Premier League season.
An internal investigation is now under way at Loftus Road, and it remains to be seen what additional sanctions the club will impose on their captain, signed last summer on a lucrative four-year deal following a free transfer from Newcastle.
QPR are set to head out to Asia for a pre-season tour in mid-July, but whether Barton will be part of that travelling party is uncertain.
Barton, 29, was hit with the lengthy ban and fined £75,000 by a Football Association-appointed independent regulatory commission on Wednesday, after being dismissed for elbowing Carlos Tevez, then kicking out at Sergio Aguero as he left the pitch in the match on May 13, before aiming a headbutt in the direction of Vincent Kompany.
There will, however, be no appeal.
“Queens Park Rangers football club can confirm it has now started a full internal investigation in relation to Joey Barton’s dismissal and subsequent events against Manchester City on the final day of the 2012/13 Barclays Premier League season,” a statement read.
“The QPR midfielder will not appeal against the independent regulatory commission’s decision made on Wednesday and he and his team are now working in full cooperation with the club to assist in the internal investigation.
“The club expects the investigation to last at least two weeks. During this period, no one from the club or Joey Barton himself will make any further comment.”
The FA have published the full report by the independent regulatory commission into the case, which revealed Barton’s ban was divided into a four-match ban for the dismissal for elbowing Tevez, given it was his second red card of the season, a five-match punishment for kicking out at Sergio Aguero, and a three-match punishment for attempting to headbutt Kompany.
Tevez appeared to strike out at Barton initially, and referee Mike Dean, via video link, told the regulatory commission that it was a red-card offence which had gone unnoticed.
In the report, which is signed by commission chairman BM Jones, it is stated: “The commission accept that Mr Barton was aggrieved by the action of Mr Tevez and Mr Dean confirmed that had the incident been seen by the officials as shown by the clip supplied by Mr Barton, it would have been an automatic red card.
“The commission find that this does not however excuse the subsequent action by Mr Barton in relation to Messrs Kompany or Aguero.”
Barton receives strong criticism in the report for his assault on Aguero, which the commission, which included former Chelsea defender Paul Elliott, said could have caused “serious injury” to the player who went on to score the title-winning goal.
“The commission considered the ’Aguero’ incident was a cold and calculated attack from behind Mr Aguero,” the report states.
“It was deliberate and the absolute anger etched in Mr Barton’s face, is most clearly seen in the videos. It was premeditated and without any provocation and could easily have caused Mr Aguero injury and maybe have put him out of the rest of the game.
“Fortunately he did not suffer any serious injury, but he must have been taken very much by surprise and shocked which could have affected his game.
“The incident was watched by millions of people on television and Mr Barton really had no option other than to admit his guilt and he did so. No great credit can be, or was, given for the admission in this regard.”