Joe Hart could be facing a nervy few weeks as waits to see whether or not Pep Guardiola brings in a new goalkeeper to potentially replace him at the Etihad Stadium – and it seems the man to do that is Barcelona’s Marc-Andre ter Stergen.
The 24-year-old is the player earmarked as the man to take over from Hart although if that is to happen it will certainly come at a cost; that cost being £67m, which would be the world record transfer fee for a goalkeeper.
But as we know all too well, City have no shortage of money and a move to Manchester may very well apeal to the young German. Yes he may very well be swapping the scorching sun of Barcelona for the more miserable climate of Manchester, but he will be swapping warming the bench at the Nou Camp for first team football at The Etihad.
Under the helm of Luis Enrique the Barcelona side rotates their keepers depending on what competition the club are playing in. Claudio Bravo is charged with being in between the sticks in La Liga, while ter Stergen has to make do with Copa Del Rey and Champions League duties.
But at 24. ter Stergen will feel that now is the time to being playing more regularly. For Barcelona it would be a great bit of business – to recoup nearly £70m for what is mainly a substitute would be something of a masterstroke. The loser in all of this would seem to be Joe Hart.
Hart needs a big season this campaign, especially after the woes of Euro 2016 – when he was at fault for two of the goals that England conceded – but if ter Stergen does come in then he will see his game time for Manchester City marginalised to that of a bit part player.
Perhaps Pep Guardiola sees Hart as a player low on confidence and mentally fragile, and therefore he views the goalkeeper role as one he needs to improve on.
There was always going to be overhaul at City this summer, what with Guardiola’s arrival, but that overhaul is really picking up pace now and it looks as if Hart is set to be the biggest victim of all the change going on in the blue half of Manchester.
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