Joe Hart Needs Good England Display to Prove Worth to Manchester City

Rob Pollard@@RobPollard_Featured ColumnistNovember 18, 2013


Manuel Pellegrini has given no timescale on Joe Hart's omission from the Manchester City starting XI.

The manager seemingly wants to see a positive reaction from his goalkeeper in the coming weeks before giving him the chance to prove he's ready for first-team action once more. However, he has hinted he will be back at some stage.

Pellegrini recently told Jeremy Cross of the Daily Star: "We will see what happens. For the moment, we are playing with Pantilimon, but we are all supporting Joe Hart and he will come back, but I can't say when."

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 04:  Joe Hart of Manchester City walks out for a training session at Carrington Training Ground on November 4, 2013 in Manchester, England.  (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Taking him out of the firing line was the only option given his dreadful run of form.

On Tuesday night, Hart looks set to start for England against Germany—his first opportunity to shine since being dropped for the 7-0 win over Norwich.

Pellegrini has made it clear he will be watching the game and that he believes Hart can demonstrate his qualities if given the nod.

I will watch him on TV. I don't know if Joe will play for England, but I'm sure if he plays, he will do very well. It doesn't matter to me who Joe plays against. For Joe, it's very good news that Roy Hodgson gives him his trust. I agree absolutely with Roy.

For all the England players, this match is more than just a friendly. It's an opportunity to prove they are worth a place in Roy Hodgson's squad for the World Cup in Brazil this summer—the most anticipated World Cup in recent memory.

It's also a chance to play against England's old enemy, the side responsible for so many of England's lowest moments, including the 4-1 defeat at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. 

For Joe Hart, it has extra significance. After being under intense scrutiny and ridiculed by many in recent weeks, and with opportunities at club level limited for the time being, he knows that he has to perform in this match.

The media and football fans in general are so fickle that one good performance in a high-profile match such as this could see the tide of public opinion shift in Hart's favour and give him a much-needed confidence boost.

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 15:  Joe Hart of England celebrates as Steven Gerrard of England scores their second goal during the FIFA 2014 World Cup Qualifying Group H match between England and Poland at Wembley Stadium on October 15, 2013 in London, Englan
Paul Gilham/Getty Images

It's clear that Hart's replacement at City, Costel Pantilimon, isn't a long-term solution for the club. He would surely have been given an opportunity sooner if City's coaching staff truly believed in his ability. 

Hart has every chance of regaining his place if he can halt the drastic decline in his form and he won't have a better opportunity between now and the January transfer window than England vs. Germany tomorrow night.


Rob Pollard is Bleacher Report's lead Manchester City correspondent and will be following the club from a Manchester base throughout the 2013-14 season. Follow him on Twitter here @TypicalCity.