Should Manchester City replace Joe Hart this summer?
Joe Hart has had a turbulent summer with England making two big mistakes at Euro 2016. The goalkeeper splits opinion among football fans, with some seeing him as world class, while others feel he is overrated and a weakness in the City side. The truth lies somewhere in the middle. Hart is a good player, who has the makings of a top tier goalkeeper, but he must add consistency to his game.
This season is going to be a big one for Hart as Pep Guardiola wants the goalkeeper in his side to carry out a specific role. At Barcelona and Bayern Munich, the Spaniard could call upon Victor Valdes and Manuel Neuer, who suited his needs to a tee. Guardiola likes to have a sweeper keeper, who must be comfortable with his feet.
He does this as it allows his side to push higher up the pitch and as a result, get their better players on the ball in more dangerous areas. Also, the goalkeeper can become an asset when the defenders are under pressure, as they can pass back to him, while knowing that the ball can then be recycled efficiently.
Distribution isn’t Hart’s strength and an area he will need to work on in training. The Englishman is a great shot-stopper and commanding of his area. One of Hart’s greatest strengths is how vocal he is, which helps the organisation on the back four. He is crucial in that respect, especially when Vincent Kompany is absent.
The biggest weakness in Hart’s game is his passion, as he can often be too hyped up for a game, leading to sloppy errors. This was evident at Euro 2016, as hart is arguably the most patriotic player in the squad and he was the one most as fault for half of the goals conceded. His passion quickly became nerves and that will have concerned Guardiola. The lack of ability with his feet can be worked on in training, but the constant errors in his game seem to be a problem linked with his psyche. This is a much harder area to correct.
Although Joe Hart is being given a chance to establish himself as a key player in the Pep Guardiola era, the speculation linking Marc-Andre ter Stegen suggests that the new manager isn’t convinced by his current goalkeeper.
The Express report that Guardiola has now decided that Hart isn’t good enough to be his number one and he will be making a move for ter Stegen before the end of the window. The German stopper is open to a move after failing to establish himself as Barcelona’s number one, but City would have to meet his £67 million release clause.
Guardiola may be tempted to put down a huge fee for ter Stegen as he would suit his style and is still very young. He is likely to develop a lot in the coming years and could become one of the best goalkeepers in the world. Although he isn’t at that level yet, Guardiola will be able to take his game onto the next level. If Guardiola doesn’t have faith in Hart, he must look to bring in a new goalkeeper and ter Stegen fits the bill.
If City decide to bring in a new keeper, whether it be ter Stegen or somebody else, then Joe Hart will have to leave the club. He is at a point in his career where he needs to be a number one at club level and he has been heavily linked to Everton. The fact Ronald Koeman’s side have been constantly linked with the England number one suggests that they know he could be available.
The goalkeeper situation at City is going to be one to follow over this month if the reports are true about Guardiola not being convinced by Joe Hart. Despite Joe Hart being a great servant to the club, this is a new ruthless regime at Manchester City and the goalkeeper hasn’t been able to push onto a world class level. There are three or four better goalkeepers in the league and if City are serious about becoming a super club, replacing Joe Hart is a logical move.
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