Joe Hart won praise for his “qualities and behaviour” from Pep Guardiola but the Manchester City boss will keep his goalkeeping option open.

Joe Hart
Joe Hart

Pep Guardiola praised the goalkepper’s attitude and application ahead of Manchester City’s Premier League opener versus Sunderland but refused to give any guarantees over the England goalkeeper’s future at the Etihad Stadium.

The shot-stopper endured a chastening Euro 2016 with England, making glaring errors in the matches against Wales and Iceland.

The 29-year-old’s future has been a matter of much speculation during the close-season, with the changes to City’s style implemented by Guardiola reported to include the desire for a “sweeper-keeper” who joins his defence in passing out from the back.

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With the England international thought to be lacking in this department, Barcelona’s Marc-Andre ter Stegen has been linked to City.

Guardiola is pleased with Hart’s efforts in preparation for the new campaign on the back of his England nightmare but, speaking at a pre-match news conference, he stopped short of a ringing endorsement.

“Joe is a player I’m so happy about his qualities, his behaviour, what he means to this club,” he said.

“After we are going to decide inside the doors. Now, he is a player of us.”


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