Amid reports linking Neil Lennon’s Celtic to Joe Hart, Matt Murray has told talkSPORT that the England international would be a “great fit all round” for the “huge” Parkhead club.
The Daily Record have claimed that Celtic are set to stage a second round of talks with the Burnley man – soon to become a free agent – and his representatives this week.
While loanee Fraser Forster did well at Parkhead last season, Celtic are said to be waiting for clarity over the Southampton man’s future, and Hart could go on to be his replacement.
Hart was deemed one of the world’s top goalkeepers several years ago, a regular for Manchester City and England who accrued close to 350 competitive appearances for the Etihad side and 75 Three Lions caps.
Spells at Torino, West Ham and Burnley have not gone to plan after Pep Guardiola rendered him surplus to requirements and moved him on from Man City.
However, Murray – a former Wolves goalkeeper who has known Hart for years – believes it would be a great move for all concerned.
“It doesn’t surprise me that a club of Celtic’s size are in for Joe with the CV he’s got. Joe wants to go somewhere and be part of a project,” he told talkSPORT (29 June, 12.30pm).
“Celtic is a huge, huge club, one of the biggest in the world. Some might say things about the level of the SPFL but he could still win things – ten in a row and those Champions League nights.
“I don’t think they will be able to keep Forster so I think Hart would be a great fit all round. I think there’s been a bit of disrespect for Joe, with the things he’s won. A top class keeper and a top class person.”
Hart is a high-calibre goalkeeper who hasn’t had the rub of the green in recent years but, much like Forster’s stock was low after being frozen out at Southampton before impressing at Celtic, the Scottish serial winners could well do the same for the former Man City man’s career.
His £45,000-a-week deal at Burnley (Spotrac) is to expire and, while he’d probably have to take a paycut at Celtic, he’d finally step out of the career wilderness he’s currently in, with first-team football, the chance to win silverware and European nights all on the cards at Paradise.