Joe Hart recently made his home debut for his new team Torino, and kept a clean sheet in the 0-0 draw with Empoli. He seemed to perform at an accomplished level, making multiple saves, which seemed to contribute to his team winning a point. With a first clean sheet now recorded, he may now use this game as motivation to keep further clean sheets, and help impact the team in a productive way. If Hart is able to continue the form which he seemed to show in the aforementioned draw, he may continue to keep his place in the England squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers, whilst also gaining experience in Italy which may enhance his development as a goalkeeper.
At the Stadio Olimpico, Hart started his second match, and he seemed to show the high level of quality he possesses. Hart made a string of saves to keep the away side at bay, and, by seeming to be the catalyst in his team earning a point, he may contribute to elevating Torino above their current 14th position. He seems to be finding success under a new manager, and this may benefit Hart in the long-term as he may be able to draw upon his experiences playing under differing tactics and philosophies to continue his development as a goalkeeper. Hart’s performance in these opening fixtures, most notably the fixture with Empoli, seemed to be an accomplished and composed one, which may showcase his versatility and flexibility as a footballer, as he seems to have adapted to a new culture and a differing style of play to the Premier League, and thus seems to be thriving in Serie A.
Prior to his time in Italy, Hart spent 10 years as a Manchester City goalkeeper, and seemed to be their first choice for the vast majority of his experience there. At the club, Hart won multiple honours, including Manchester City’s first Premier League title in 2012, before seeming to contribute to the repetition of the feat in 2014. Hart seems to have seen off competition for the goalkeeping position in the past, most notably with Shay Given and, whilst Pep Guardiola has loaned him out for this season, playing with different teammates, the majority of whom are a different nationality to Hart, may suggest Hart is adaptable and is able to communicate with a variety of teammates, a trait which may contribute to his reinstatement in the City side.
For England, Hart also seems to possess big-game experience which may prove vital in pivotal fixtures throughout the season. After gaining 21 caps for the U21 side, Hart was called into action for his country in 2008, and claimed a place in the 2010 World Cup squad. Even though Hart was a substitute during the tournament, he seemed to gain experience at football’s pinnacle competition, and started England’s next match. He has now played at the World Cup in Brazil, and successive European Championships, and prior to the move to Torino he may have been the undisputed number one. Premier League goalkeepers Jack Butland, Fraser Forster and Tom Heaton may all now be competing with Hart for the jersey, and this may motivate Hart, as he may need to strive to continuously play at an accomplished level to keep his place. Allardyce is hopeful Hart may get regular football in Italy, and, if he does, the England manager may continue to include the experienced veteran in his upcoming squads.
Torino’s upcoming fixtures include a trip to Pescara, before consecutive home games versus Roma and Fiorentina, and Hart may keep his place in the starting eleven after seeming to perform at his peak abilities. If Hart plays in these fixtures, and perhaps keeps further clean sheets, Sam Allardyce may choose to continue to play Joe Hart as England’s first choice goalkeeper. Ultimately, Hart’s experience in Italy aims to be beneficial to him, as he may be proving he is an accomplished player who is able to play at a high standard amongst any teammates, a factor which may be useful in the both the England and Manchester City setups.
How may Hart utilise his experience in Italy to ensure he remains in the England squad?