Wednesday, December 13, 2017

It was never going to be a fair fight with Guardiola, admits Hart

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 2 Oct 2017

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Joe Hart has revealed how he had to leave Manchester City last year after realising he never stood a chance of forcing his way into Pep Guardiola’s plans.

The England goalkeeper was informed he was surplus to requirements not long after Guardiola’s arrival at the club, meaning he had to either stay and fight for his place or move on elsewhere.

While Hart had been in a similar situation at Manchester City before – former manager Mark Hughes signed Shay Given to take over between the posts in February 2009 – he realised this time around the situation was different.

With Guardiola holding so much power, Hart headed to Serie A to spend the 2016-17 campaign with Torino and is now on loan at West Ham United.

“When I was 22, when Hughes did it, it made me a lot angrier than it did this time. I didn’t know how to deal with or how to cope with it,” he told The Offside Rule podcast.

“So when this happened I was all up for a fight, and a fair fight is good for me and if I lose I will shake hands with my opposition, but I realised this wasn’t going to be my opportunity for a fair fight so I looked elsewhere.

“There was no point getting upset or irate because there was only ever going to be one winner and that was going to be the guy who Manchester City had put in charge.

“He has a lot of power and City fought like hell to get him as their manager and he had decisions to make and he made that with me.”

In the same interview, Hart admits he ideally wanted a permanent move away from Manchester City in the last transfer window, only to be priced out of a deal.

He has played regularly for West Ham this season and, despite coming under pressure from Jack Butland, remained England’s first choice for their World Cup qualifiers against Malta and Slovakia at the start of September.

“I would have loved to have signed somewhere permanent: I want to be set, I want to have goals and be driven,” he added.

“But there was too much money put on my head and people weren’t willing to pay it so another loan came about.”

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