Charles Joseph John Hart (born 19 April 1987) is an English professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Premier League club Burnley and the English national team. With over 100 Premier League clean sheets, Hart holds the joint record for the most Premier League Golden Glove awards (four) and has amassed 75 international caps since his debut in 2008.
Hart playing for Manchester City in 2014
|Full name||Charles Joseph John Hart|
|Date of birth||19 April 1987|
|Place of birth||Shrewsbury, England|
|Height||6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)|
|2007||→ Tranmere Rovers (loan)||6||(0)|
|2007||→ Blackpool (loan)||5||(0)|
|2009–2010||→ Birmingham City (loan)||36||(0)|
|2016–2017||→ Torino (loan)||36||(0)|
|2017–2018||→ West Ham United (loan)||19||(0)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 00:54, 27 December 2018 (UTC)|
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 19:56, 24 December 2018 (UTC)
He began his career at his hometown club Shrewsbury Town in the Football Conference and League Two. In 2006, he moved to top-flight Manchester City, having attracted the attention of several Premier League teams. He spent time on loan at Tranmere Rovers and Blackpool in his first season, before spending the 2009–10 season at Birmingham City. Hart was nominated for the PFA Young Player of the Year and was voted as the Premier League goalkeeper of the 2009–10 season in recognition of his performances at Birmingham. He returned to Manchester City for the 2010–11 season and won the Golden Glove for keeping the most clean sheets throughout the Premier League season. Hart replicated this feat in the 2011–12 season and was a key player during City's title-winning campaign. He won the Golden Glove for the third year in a row in the following season, and earned a second Premier League title in 2014. In 2015, Hart once again won the Golden Glove award for the fourth time in five years. With the arrival of Pep Guardiola in 2016, Hart was dropped for selection by the new manager and made only one appearance in the Champions League before moving on loan to Torino and West Ham United in successive seasons. He then signed a permanent transfer to Burnley after having being told he had no first team future with City.
A former regular for England at Under-21 level, Hart made his senior international debut in June 2008, and was recognised as England's first-choice goalkeeper from 2010 to 2017. He has gained over 70 caps and was selected in England's squads for two FIFA World Cups and as many UEFA European Championships.
Hart was born in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, to Charles Hart, who sold gym equipment, and his wife Louise, a nursery school teacher. He attended Oxon Primary School, followed by Meole Brace School in Shrewsbury, where he was Head Boy in his final year. As a schoolboy, he was an equally competent cricketer and briefly played for Shrewsbury CC in the Birmingham and District Premier League and also spent two years in Worcestershire's youth squads, playing alongside England cricketer Steven Davies.
While still a 15-year-old schoolboy, Hart travelled with the first-team squad of his hometown club, Shrewsbury Town, to Exeter City on 1 February 2003. He was a non-playing substitute on that occasion and fulfilled that role again versus Rochdale at Gay Meadow on 1 March 2003, still some six weeks short of his 16th birthday. This match yielded Shrewsbury's final victory in a season that culminated in relegation to the Football Conference. During the one season that Shrewsbury spent in the Conference, Hart made his senior debut on 20 April 2004, a day after his 17th birthday. He played the full 90 minutes in the match against Gravesend & Northfleet. Four days later, he conceded three at Morecambe.
Hart did not play again until April of the following year, as Scott Howie dominated goalkeeping duties. With Shrewsbury back in the Football League (the newly renamed League Two) and struggling, Hart played six matches, conceding four goals.
From the start of the 2005–06 season, Hart made the step up into the first team, and became the club's first-choice goalkeeper. He played a full 46-match league season, conceding 55 goals. Despite conceding more than one goal per game, Hart won plaudits for his personal performances, winning his first England under-19 cap in October 2005, as a substitute against Poland.
Hart also found admirers in the Premier League, with several top-flight scouts attending matches. On 30 November 2005, the Shropshire Star newspaper reported that Everton goalkeeping coach Chris Woods had been present at Town's previous league match, a 4–3 loss at Rochdale. Manager Gary Peters said "Everton have been to watch him, but you could say the same about Arsenal, Chelsea and every other team in the Premiership." Speculation about his future continued for the duration of the season, and with the presence of their goalkeeping coach Tim Flowers at several matches, Manchester City became the most likely of his suitors.
Hart was announced as the top League Two player for January 2006 in the PFA Fans' Player of the Month Awards, voted for by fans via the Professional Footballers' Association website. At the PFA Awards ceremony on 23 March 2006, it was announced that Hart had been voted as League Two's best goalkeeper for 2005–06 by his fellow professionals, earning him a place in the League Two PFA Team of the Year.
Hart's move to Manchester City was completed as soon as Hart returned from England under-19 duty in Belgium, where a defeat to Serbia and Montenegro in the elite round meant England failed to qualify for the 2006 UEFA European Under-19 Championship. It was reported at the time that City were to pay an initial £600,000 fee for Hart, rising to £1.5 million if undisclosed clauses were achieved, but John Wardle, then City chairman, revealed in 2012 that the transfer fee was actually £100,000. Hart was recommended to City hierarchy by the club's goalkeeping coach Tim Flowers who believed he had great potential. Hart made his debut for City on 14 October 2006 after injuries ruled out Andreas Isaksson and Nicky Weaver for the Premier League match against Sheffield United. He kept a clean sheet in the match, which finished goalless.
2007: Loans to Tranmere Rovers and BlackpoolEdit
Hart spent January 2007 on loan to League One club Tranmere Rovers. He made six appearances and conceded eight goals. He was then named in his then club manager Stuart Pearce's first squad in his part-time role as England U21 coach, alongside another goalkeeper uncapped at U21 level, Ben Alnwick. He was not chosen to start the match on 6 February 2007 against Spain, but did come on as a substitute late in the match.
In April 2007, Hart joined Blackpool on loan as cover for the injured trio of Rhys Evans, Paul Rachubka and Lewis Edge. He kept a clean sheet in a 2–0 win for Blackpool away to Huddersfield Town on 9 April 2007, in his first appearance for the club. Blackpool won all five matches in which Hart appeared, including a 6–3 win away to Swansea City in his final appearance.
2007–09: First choice keeper at Manchester CityEdit
On his return from a successful loan spell at Blackpool, then Manchester City manager Sven-Göran Eriksson named Hart as Manchester City's number one ahead of Andreas Isaksson. After his performance against Newcastle United, Eriksson named him as "one of the biggest talents in this country as a goalkeeper", and that he had the potential to become an England international in the future. Only months later, he made his England debut against Trinidad and Tobago on 1 June 2008. In October, he was inducted to Shropshire Schools & Colleges Football Association's Hall of Fame along with former teammate David Edwards in recognition of their achievements. Later that month, he signed a new five-year contract.
After Isaksson's departure to PSV Eindhoven, Hart took the vacant number 1 jersey when the official squad numbers for the 2008–09 season were announced. However, his position as first-choice keeper was taken by Shay Given upon the Irishman's arrival at the club in January 2009.
2009–10: Loan to Birmingham CityEdit
Having made no appearances for City since Given's arrival, rumours began to emerge of a loan move away from Manchester. City secured the transfer of Stuart Taylor from Aston Villa on 23 June 2009, paving the way for Hart to leave. The following day it was announced that Hart would spend the 2009–10 Premier League season on loan to newly promoted Birmingham City. He made his debut in Birmingham's opening match of the season, a 1–0 defeat away to Manchester United.
In the early part of the season, Hart made some errors which cost Birmingham City goals, and Maik Taylor's clean sheet against Manchester City, a match for which Hart was ineligible, left manager Alex McLeish with a selection dilemma. McLeish chose Hart, who kept his place in the starting 11 as Birmingham went on a club-record 12-match unbeaten run in the top division and set a Premier League record by fielding the same starting 11 for nine consecutive matches. His performances improved: against Chelsea in December, he "showed not only sharp judgment and reflexes, making three outstanding saves ... but a lack of fear also", despite needing staples in a gashed head sustained when diving at the feet of Salomon Kalou. Hart was voted Birmingham City's Player of the Year for 2009–10, and nominated for the 2010 PFA Young Player of the Year award alongside Wayne Rooney, Cesc Fàbregas and James Milner. Though Milner won that award, Hart earned a place in the PFA Team of the Year.
2010–16: League and cup honours with Manchester CityEdit
After a successful spell at Birmingham, Hart earned a place in the England squad for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini was unsure over the future of Hart and dispatched his goalkeeping coach, Massimo Battara to watch over him during his loan spell at Birmingham City. Battara reported that Hart was a "very good goalkeeper, with very high physical and technical abilities" and advised that he kept Hart in his plans for the years ahead. One of the major pre-season debates was whether Hart would start ahead of the experienced Shay Given after his return to City following an impressive loan spell with Birmingham City.
Hart was chosen ahead of Shay Given to start the opening match of the 2010–11 season against Tottenham Hotspur. He produced a man of the match performance, saving numerous challenging shots including a deflected effort from Benoît Assou-Ekotto, which helped City to draw the match 0–0. Hart also kept a clean sheet in Manchester City's 3–0 victory over Liverpool, where he was still first-choice goalkeeper and made even more good saves, enhancing his reputation even further. Hart conceded his first goal of the season from a late penalty by Darren Bent in a 1–0 defeat at Sunderland, and made an error that led to Blackburn Rovers' opening goal in a 1–1 draw two weeks later.
Hart helped his team overcome Manchester United in the FA Cup semi-final by producing an excellent early save to deny Dimitar Berbatov the opening goal; the match ended 1–0 to City, thanks to a goal scored by Yaya Touré. He kept another clean sheet against Tottenham Hotspur to earn his team a place in the Champions League for the first time, and another in the FA Cup final in which Manchester City beat Stoke City 1–0 with another goal from Touré.
Hart's 18 clean sheets in the 2010–11 Premier League season earned him the Premier League Golden Glove award. He also set a new club record for the most clean sheets during a season, with 29; the previous mark was set by Nicky Weaver with 26 when the team were playing two divisions lower. He also received City's Performance of the Season award for the match against Tottenham Hotspur in August 2010. Hart's position as City's "number one" was cemented when Given departed City for Aston Villa in July 2011. On 8 August 2011, he signed a new contract until 2016. Hart won the Golden Glove award for the second year running in 2011–12, and helped City to win their first Premier League title, and first top-flight title for 44 years, which they clinched on the final day of the season by beating Queens Park Rangers 3–2.
Hart's form dipped in the 2012–13 Premier League season, although he still won the Golden Glove award for keeping most clean sheets despite rivals Manchester United regaining their title as revenge for the previous season's last-day title win on goal difference. He started in goal for Manchester City in the 2013 FA Cup Final against Wigan Athletic but let in a 90th-minute header by Ben Watson; Wigan won 1–0, and City ended the season without winning a trophy. His form continued to dip in the 2013–14 Premier League season and, following conceding a decisive 90th-minute goal by Fernando Torres in a 2–1 loss to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on 27 October, he was replaced by Costel Pantilimon for a home match against Norwich City which City won 7–0. A month later, Hart returned to the Manchester City team for a Champions League group match against Viktoria Plzeň. Hart regained his place as City's starting goalkeeper in the Premier League in a 4–2 win over Fulham on 21 December 2013, and remained first choice as the team went on to win the league for the second time in three seasons.
On 24 February 2015, Hart saved a penalty kick from five-time FIFA Ballon d'Or winner Lionel Messi in a Champions League round of 16 fixture against Barcelona. After the return leg of the same tie Messi described Hart as a "phenomenon" after a performance where he produced a record-breaking 10 saves during the match. Hart ended the 2014–15 season by keeping a clean sheet against Southampton in his 300th appearance for Manchester City to win the Premier League Golden Glove award for the fourth time.
As he had been in 2014, Hart was on the bench for the 2016 League Cup Final; this time, his understudy Willy Caballero featured in a penalty shoot-out victory against Liverpool. On 6 April, Hart saved a penalty kick from Zlatan Ibrahimović in Manchester City's Champions League quarter-final first leg against Paris Saint-Germain at the Parc des Princes. It was his second penalty save of the season's competition, after previously keeping out Raffael's kick in a 2–1 group stage win at Borussia Mönchengladbach on 30 September 2015.
2016–17: Loan to TorinoEdit
On 13 August 2016, Hart was dropped by new manager Pep Guardiola for the first match of the 2016–17 Premier League season. The absence followed his poor performances at UEFA Euro 2016, and Guardiola's desire for a player with better footwork who could fill a sweeper-keeper role. Hart made his first start of the 2016–17 season in a Champions League qualifying match against Steaua Bucharest, as captain of the City side that won 1–0 on the night, 6–0 on aggregate. Following the match, Hart was applauded by the crowd, in an atmosphere which was described as resembling a pre-departure testimonial. Following speculation linking Hart with various top European clubs, including Arsenal, Borussia Dortmund, Everton, Liverpool, Milan and Sevilla, Hart surprisingly decided to pursue a season-long loan in the Serie A with Torino. In doing so, he became the first English goalkeeper to sign for a Serie A club since the league's inception in 1929.
On 11 September 2016, Hart suffered a tough start in his debut for Torino, being partly at fault for the equaliser in a 2–1 away defeat to Atalanta when his punch from a corner fell at the feet of an opposing attacker who scored. However, Hart then kept consecutive clean sheets in his next two appearances against Empoli and Pescara, both of which ended 0–0. Hart played in all 36 of Torino's remaining league matches in the 2016–17 season, but in April the club's president Urbano Cairo suggested his level of performance had dropped amid transfer speculation.
The club finished in ninth position (of 20) in Serie A, conceding 66 goals in 38 matches, the fourth-highest number in the league.
2017–18: Loan to West Ham UnitedEdit
On 18 July 2017, Hart signed for Premier League club West Ham United on a season-long loan, having been permitted to find another club by City. He made his debut for West Ham on 13 August 2017, in a 4–0 defeat away to Manchester United and conceded 10 goals in his first three appearances, although West Ham captain Mark Noble defended his goalkeeper's performances. In a Daily Telegraph article, it was claimed that opposing forwards were able to exploit a "weakness" against "low shots to his left."
On 7 August 2018, Burnley announced the signing of Hart from Manchester City on an initial two-year contract for an undisclosed fee, believed to be in the region of £3.5m. He made his Burnley debut on 9 August in the first leg of the third qualifying round of the Europa League against İstanbul Başakşehir keeping a clean sheet in a 0–0 draw. After playing in Burnley’s first 19 league games of the season he was dropped for Tom Heaton after a 5–1 defeat to Everton on Boxing Day.
Hart made his first international appearance in September 2005 in an England under-19 friendly match against Belgium at Darlington; replacing starting goalkeeper Ben Alnwick at half-time, he was unable to save the penalty that made the score 3–2, but with three minutes left made a "terrific one on one save" from an unmarked attacker. He played in five more matches for the under-19s, his last a 1–0 defeat away to Serbia and Montenegro on 22 May 2006.
After making his under-21 debut as a substitute for Scott Carson in a 2–2 draw with Spain, Hart was selected by Stuart Pearce in the preliminary England Under-21 30-man squad for the 2007 UEFA European Under-21 Championship, and made the final 23. In the team's final friendly before the finals, Hart was selected for his first under-21 start, and played the full 90 minutes in a 5–0 win over Slovakia at Carrow Road. However, Hart took no part in the finals, with Carson playing in all four of England's fixtures.
Hart played in all the qualifying matches for the 2009 European Championships, In the finals, he started the first two group-stage matches and was rested for the last match as England had already sealed their passage to the knock-out stage. In the semi-final against Sweden, he conceded three goals in the second half as the match ended 3–3 after extra time, but made up for it by saving a penalty and scoring another as England won 5–4 in the shoot-out. However, he was yellow-carded for leaving his line to talk to Mikael Lustig as he prepared to take his penalty. England's appeal was rejected, so Hart was suspended for the final; Scott Loach kept goal as England lost 4–0 to Germany.
Having been a regular in the England under-21 squad, Hart was called up by Fabio Capello to the senior England team for the friendly matches against the United States and Trinidad and Tobago. An unused substitute against the United States, he made his debut against Trinidad and Tobago on 1 June 2008 at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain. He came on at half time for David James with England 2–0 up, eventually running out 3–0 winners. However, Hart's senior England debut did not earn Shrewsbury Town the expected bonus of £500,000 from Manchester City, as negotiated as part of his transfer in 2006, because it was not a competitive match.
Hart kept his place in the squad for a friendly against the Czech Republic in August, but remained unused. After Blackburn Rovers goalkeeper Paul Robinson withdrew from the squad for World Cup qualifiers against Ukraine and Belarus in October 2009, Hart took his place, and in November, he was called up for a friendly against Brazil, but he did not appear in either match.
Capello named Hart in his provisional 30-man squad for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Hart played the second half of both of England's warm-up matches, replacing Robert Green against Mexico and James against Japan, and kept a clean sheet in each case. All three goalkeepers, Hart, Green and James, were included in the final 23-man selection.
Hart did not feature in the World Cup but started England's next match, a friendly against Hungary, to earn his fourth cap. He conceded his first England goal in dubious circumstances when the ball appeared not to have crossed the line from a deflection from Phil Jagielka, and made a vital late save from Zoltán Gera as England won 2–1. Hart was given his first competitive cap in a UEFA Euro 2012 qualifier, a 4–0 win against Bulgaria at Wembley Stadium; he made three crucial saves, one of which he palmed away to begin the counterattack that led to an England goal. He won another two caps November 2011 in friendlies against world champions Spain and Sweden, in each case keeping a clean sheet in a 1–0 England victory.
On 16 May 2012, new England manager Roy Hodgson named Hart in his UEFA Euro 2012 squad. He played in England's second warm-up friendly, against Belgium at Wembley Stadium, keeping a clean sheet as England won 1–0. In the tournament he made the most saves of any goalkeeper in the group phase with 14. However, he was beaten by Andrea Pirlo's "panenka" shot in England's penalty shoot-out defeat to Italy in the quarter-finals. Pirlo had stated that Hart's antics led to him thinking that "he had to get off his high horse".
On 6 February 2013, Hart saved a penalty kick and the subsequent follow-up shot from Ronaldinho in a friendly match against Brazil at Wembley Stadium. This double save proved to be crucial in helping England win the match 2–1, and thereby securing their first win over Brazil for 23 years.
Hart was selected for his second FIFA World Cup in 2014. He made his tournament debut in England's first group match, a 2–1 defeat to Italy in Manaus, and also played in the next match, a loss by the same scoreline to Uruguay. With England not likely to advance, Hodgson made changes for their last match, against Costa Rica, with Ben Foster playing in goal instead.
In October 2014, England fans voted Hart man of the match against San Marino – in which he made only one save and rarely touched the ball – and repeated the exercise a few days later against Estonia; Jack Wilshere was the official best player in each fixture. Hart became the sixth English goalkeeper to earn his 50th cap, in a 1–1 friendly draw with Italy at Juventus Stadium on 31 March 2015. On 13 November that year, with Rooney rested, he captained England for the first time in a 2–0 friendly defeat to Spain in Alicante.
Hart was included in England's 23-man squad for UEFA Euro 2016. In the second match, against Wales in Lens, he made an error to allow Gareth Bale to score from a long-range free kick, although England came back to win 2–1. Hart made another mistake to let in a winning goal from Kolbeinn Sigþórsson in the defeat to Iceland in the last 16, after which he admitted that criticism of the team would be justifiable.
Despite being England's goalkeeper at their three most recent major tournaments, on 16 May 2018, he was left out of Gareth Southgate's 23-man England national team squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
- As of match played 26 December 2018
|Club||Season||League||National Cup[a]||League Cup||Europe||Other||Total|
|Shrewsbury Town||2002–03||Third Division||0||0||0||0||0||0||—||0||0||0||0|
|Manchester City||2006–07||Premier League||1||0||0||0||0||0||—||—||1||0|
|Tranmere Rovers (loan)||2006–07||League One||6||0||—||—||—||—||6||0|
|Blackpool (loan)||2006–07||League One||5||0||—||—||—||—||5||0|
|Birmingham City (loan)||2009–10||Premier League||36||0||5||0||0||0||—||—||41||0|
|Torino (loan)||2016–17||Serie A||36||0||1||0||—||—||—||37||0|
|West Ham United (loan)||2017–18||Premier League||19||0||3||0||1||0||—||—||23||0|
- As of match played 14 November 2017
- Premier League: 2011–12, 2013–14
- FA Cup: 2010–11; runner-up: 2012–13
- Football League Cup: 2013–14, 2015–16
- Premier League Golden Glove: 2010–11, 2011–12, 2012–13, 2014–15
- PFA Team of the Year: 2005–06 League Two, 2009–10 Premier League, 2011–12 Premier League
- Birmingham City Player of the Year: 2009–10
- Manchester City Performance of the Season: 2010–11
- Manchester City Player of the Month: August 2010, March 2015
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