Joe Hart has paid tribute to Manchester City fans for the support shown to him during a “difficult few weeks” that has ended with him exiled on loan at Torino.
The England goalkeeper has been deemed surplus to requirements by City boss Pep Guardiola, apparently due to doubts over his footwork, and has opted for a season-long switch to Serie A.
While Hart is under contract at City until 2019, the tone of an emotional open letter posted on his Facebook account suggested his time at the Premier League club is at an end.
His message read: “I just wanted to take this opportunity to address all the amazing Manchester City fans who have been so good to me.
“It’s been a difficult few weeks but that will never cloud the amazing journey and experience your great club has given to me.
“From the moment I signed in 2006, the club and its fans have given me football and life experiences I could never have imagined and I am so thankful for that.
“Football is a crazy game and, due to circumstances, I am now moving on to another chapter of my career and I am very grateful that Torino has given me this opportunity to play for their great club.
“But the feelings I felt during the recent Steaua Bucharest game [his last appearance for City, last week] will live with me forever. You can’t buy that and I will struggle to replicate them. So thank you for that and all the amazing memories.
“There are many great people at the club behind the scenes and the club is moving in the right direction, so I would like to wish Manchester City football club, all its staff and players and of course the fans, all the best for the coming season and beyond.”
Hart joined City in 2006 and has won the Premier League (twice), League Cup (twice) and FA Cup.
— Sergio Kun Aguero (@aguerosergiokun) August 31, 2016