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Where next for Hart?

The fall of goalkeeper Joe Hart is a harsh reminder that confidence is absolutely crucial for the performance of the man between the sticks. The former England number one has experienced an unbelievable fall from the top of domestic football to finding himself unattached in the summer of 2020.

After enduring a poor Euro 2016, Hart was dropped by then-new Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola, in favour of Chilean Claudio Bravo, who fit the Spaniard’s philosophy of a ball-playing goalkeeper. Since then, the ex-City man has experienced tough loan spells at Torino and West Ham United before joining Burnley in the summer of 2018 and playing second fiddle to both Tom Heaton and Nick Pope. Now, after just 24 appearances in two seasons, Hart finds himself without a club for the first time in his career.

Can the former England international and four-time winner of the Premier League Golden Glove find his form and resurrect his career at the age of 33? Let's take a look where he ends up next.

Hart Celtic odds

With Fraser Forster returning to parent club Southampton, the Scottish champions find themselves without a goalkeeper, and Hart is being pegged as the man for the role. The Englishman has never played in Scotland before, spending his club career in England with the exception of his sole year in Italy.

However, the ex-City shot-stopper would surely jump at the chance to play for Celtic, given how his career seems to be over in England's top-flight. Not only are the Hoops a historic club with an international reputation, but Hart would be starting for a team that could reach the UEFA Champions League group stage, with a club that bags trophies for fun.

The Englishman is now 4/5 to join Celtic and it looks his most sensible and likely option.

Hart West brom odds

After Brentford heartbreakingly lost their chance to earn promotion, West Bromwich Albion returned to the Premier League for the 2019/20 season. The club do have a number one in former Manchester United man, Sam Johnstone, and the 27-year-old kept 14 clean sheets as the Baggies claimed second in the Championship.

Hart would have to fight for a starting role, and West Brom may consider bringing him to add experience to the squad, as well as providing a solid backup option to Johnstone.

However, Hart has left Burnley as he refuses to play second fiddle and it is unlikely he will want to do so again - he is now 4/1 to join West Brom.

Hart Birmingham odds

Joe Hart played for Birmingham City back in the 2009-10 season, where he was on loan from City at just 22. In that campaign, Hart was exceptional and was nominated for PFA Young Player of the Season, whilst making his way into the PFA Team of the Year as he claimed the Blues' Player of the Year.

Birmingham currently have Lee Camp between the sticks, but the 35-year-old kept just seven clean sheets as the club completed another dismal campaign.

Hart would surely earn the starting role at his former club and at 8/1, the odds aren't so bad.

Hart Stoke odds

With Jack Butland still in goal for Stoke City, a move to the Potters seems unlikely. However, Butland has been linked with a move back to Premier League clubs again and this summer could finally be his chance to join a top-flight side.

If that is to happen, Joe Hart would be a plausible and cheaper option for Stoke and he is now priced at 12/1 with Sky Bet. Despite the higher odds, it seems a more likely outcome, but it all depends on whether or not Butland departs.

Hart Derby odds

"A lot of clubs will be after Joe Hart," said Derby County's goalkeeping coach Shay Given.

One of Joe Hart’s England teammates, Wayne Rooney, could be a reason for the goalkeeper to join Pride Park and the Rams are certainly in need of a new keeper. Phillip Cocu's side are without an established keeper, and with Ben Hamer’s contract expiring this summer, they need not one, but perhaps two men to occupy the sticks this coming season.

Hart would compete with Dutchman Kelle Roos for the starting role whilst also providing Premier League experience alongside Rooney in the dressing room and he is great odds of 14/1.

By Andrew Gamble