London: Joey Barton's first game for new club QPR will come not as expected against Wigan on Saturday but against his former employers Newcastle a fortnight later.
The 28-year-old midfielder signed for the Premier League newcomers on a four-year-deal on Friday, and had been scheduled to make his debut 24 hours later against Wigan.
Barton had declared himself fit and available for that clash at the DW Stadium but it has since emerged the paperwork connected to his move to west London had not been completed in time.
As a result, the midfielder's first QPR run-out is likely to come in two weeks against Newcastle, which Barton knows will be a difficult experience.
"There is an important game at Wigan first and foremost then we will start concentrating on the Newcastle game after that," he told QPR Player.
"It will be strange. I have still got a lot of friends at the football club and spent four and a half happy years there.
"It will be difficult but that is football.
"Ships in the night, that is the philosophy we live by and that is a prime example of it."
He left St James' Park after falling from grace with the Newcastle management in recent weeks after publicly criticising the club's transfer policy in light of the departures of Kevin Nolan and Jose Enrique.
Newcastle subsequently announced that Barton was available on a free transfer.