The rise and demise of Joe Hart

John Brewin joined us to assess the downfall of England's great white goalkeeping hope

BY Ciaran Bradley 11:42 Wednesday 16 May 2018, 11:42 16 May 2018

Joe Hart

One of the outstanding images from Manchester City's last-gasp Premier League triumph in 2012 was the image of a talisman haring down the touchline in raptures of ecstasy. But this was not Sergio Aguero. Joe Hart was screaming at the top of his lungs in disbelief at a league victory that often seemed beyond City's grasp.

Hart had solid cause to be considered one of City's key players that season, and was awarded the Golden Gloves award for the most clean sheets - one of the four times that he has won it. Today, Hart is expected to be left out of the World Cup 2018 squad altogether, despite being considered firmly number 1 for the 2014 tournament.

John Brewin joined OTB AM to discuss where it had gone wrong for West Ham's on-loan goalkeeper, and we began on the feeling that Hart brings with him a great deal more baggage and ego than other players.

"If you were to read some of the coverage of Joe Hart written by his cheerleaders, they will tell you that he's a great character to have around the dressing room. From what I understand he can be that, but he certainly is an ego.

"A number one goalkeeper having an ego - that is accepted in football. But a number three goalkeeper? A guy that's not going to play - that's going to be a problem.

"There is the idea that [Gareth] Southgate did want to take Hart, he was considering him and felt he was a good enough goalkeeper, but then unfortunately he went to watch him play. His performance for West Ham against Burnley was indicative - and that was the end of that."

 

John also took the time to look at the specifics of why Hart may no longer be in demand by even middling clubs in the Premier League.

"When we think of Joe Hart's problems as a goalkeeper, the first one is how often he is beaten to the left-hand side. That's the weakness that people talk about all the time.

"The second is that Pep Guardiola arrived at Manchester City took one look - maybe two or three - and decided that he wasn't the goalkeeper for Manchester City. There are two things there: one, there is Joe Hart as the big character - Pep Guardiola perhaps wanted people who wouldn't be too disruptive. Also, there's the fact that goalkeeping has changed and the goalkeeper needs to be able to play the ball out. Hart was not particularly receptive to that."

His situation at West Ham has been a microcosm of Hart's recent situation: high hopes and ego punctuated by poor performance. John reflected on David Moyes' decision to consider Adrian ahead of him large tracts of his reign.

"David Moyes is the manager of a team that is trying to stay in the Premier League and has a pretty weak squad. As has been pretty well-documented, he has not had much money spent on his team. They have a pretty good goalkeeper in Adrian, a serviceable goalkeeper who played well for Sam Allardyce in particular at West Ham.

"I think when Joe Hart went on loan to West Ham on loan from Manchester City that he thought he'd be first-choice goalkeeper. But [...] if you are not playing well enough, then you do not deserve to be in the team - it is as simple as that."

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