Harry Redknapp hails Joey Barton influence

Joey Barton of QPR holds up the shirt of team-mate Alejandro Faurlin as he celebrates with team-mates after scoring the equalising goal during the Sky Bet Championship match between Reading and Queens Park Rangers at Madejski Stadium on November 09, 2013
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Harry Redknapp hails Joey Barton as QPR's "driving force" following his equaliser in the 1-1 draw with Reading earlier today.

Queens Park Rangers manager Harry Redknapp has hailed Joey Barton as the "driving force" behind the club's promotion bid following the 1-1 draw with Reading.

The former Newcastle United midfielder earned a valuable point for the R's at the Madejski Stadium, cancelling out Garath McClearly's effort with a 78th-minute strike - which he dedicated to the injured Alejandro Faurlin.

The 31-year-old unveiled a QPR shirt with the number 32 on the back in tribute to the Argentine, and Redknapp is proud of Barton's all-round influence on the team.

"I have to say that Joey has been fantastic," he told the club's official website. "He has been the driving force behind the team this season."

The West London outfit moved to within a point of Burnley at the summit of the Championship following the result.

Redknapp's men host Charlton Athletic at Loftus Road in a fortnight, with the international break halting domestic fixtures next weekend.

Benoit Assou-Ekotto of QPR battles with Jordan Obita of Reading during the Sky Bet Championship match between Reading and Queens Park Rangers at Madejski Stadium on November 09, 2013
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