Despite showing some sparks over two legs, the Hoops failed to overcome the Midtjylland hurdle on Wednesday night and endured elimination from the Champions League qualifiers in extra time. However, Ange Postecoglou must continue the squad rebuild to script a resurgence and according to Sky Sports, Celtic have identified veteran Joe Hart as a potential summer target.
The Bhoys roped in Vasilis Barkas last year to restore stability between the sticks. The Greek custodian arrived with a big reputation but failed to justify the hype due to an array of erroneous outings. Scott Bain and Conor Hazard had their moments too, but none of them did enough to cement a place week in week out.
While they tried to bring back Fraser Forster for a third Parkhead stint, the Englishman is still contesting for a starting role at Southampton. Celtic, therefore, have shifted their focus on his fellow countryman who used to be the Three Lions’ undisputed ‘number 1’ a few years ago.
The 34-year-old was integral to Manchester City’s redemption since the Middle East takeover. He was roped in from League Two side Shrewsbury Town after a majestic 2005-06 campaign and went on to spend more than a decade at the Etihad before being shown the door by Pep Guardiola. Hart was dismal in EURO 2016 and the Spaniard’s desire for a sweeper-keeper led to a season-long loan to Torino in the summer of 2016.
The spells at Torino and West Ham United did not work out either and the once esteemed shot-stopper ended up at Burnley a couple of years later. Surprisingly, there he remained as the understudy to Nick Pope for a couple of years and joined Tottenham Hotspur last summer on a free transfer.
Why Celtic Must Think Twice Before Roping In Hart
The Englishman was mostly deployed in their Europa League encounters, but the arrival of Pierluigi Gollini from Atalanta has now put him further down the pecking order. The Azzurri custodian is set to compete with Hugo Lloris for minutes and the Lilywhites, therefore, would allow Hart to leave if a suitable offer is received.
Despite his enormous contribution over the years, his weakness against the low shots to his left got exploited by the forwards far too frequently. His footwork is still a major concern if compared to the ball-playing ability of modern-day keepers and the gaffer, thus, must analyze further whether the English ace would fit in while playing it out from the back.
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