‘I’m gutted… this is hard to take’: Joe Hart admits he is hurt by England World Cup snub as he insists ‘I know what I bring to this team’
Joe Hart has admitted he is ‘gutted’ after being snubbed by England boss Gareth Southgate for his 23-man World Cup squad.
Hart was overlooked by Southgate this week with the England boss preferring to take Nick Pope as his third-choice goalkeeper due to his excellent form for Burnley this season.
The Manchester City keeper, who had been England’s No 1 during their qualifying campaign, was believed to have been furious after being ruthlessly axed from the squad and spoke out about his omission for the first time on Friday.
Joe Hart has admitted he is ‘gutted’ after missing out on England’s World Cup squad this week
The 31-year-old wrote a statement on Instagram addressing his omission from the team
In a statement on Instagram, Hart wrote: ‘Not going to lie, I’m gutted. After 2 years of trying to make the most of a really tough situation, this is hard to take.
‘I’m proud to have put in the graft and play every minute to qualify with the team and have a really important input in that outcome. I know what I bring to the team, but it is what it is.
‘Good luck to the team out there, the players know that even though I won’t be there, I will have my England shirt on as a fan this time and supporting all the way. No fear, go and smash it.’
Hart’s response to being dropped takes a similar tone to that of Jack Wilshere, who appeared to break rank on Thursday night by aiming a dig at Southgate on social media following his failure to land a spot on the plane to Russia.
The England boss reiterated his World Cup squad was picked based on performances only on Thursday but insisted Hart’s omission does not necessarily signal the end of his international career.
‘Of course it was a difficult call,’ Southgate accepted during his media conference.
‘He took it very professionally, of course disappointed, as was Ryan Bertrand but both very professional. I know as a player that the disappointment is good to talk through in a few months’ time.
‘He played in most of our qualifying matches, he’s been a big part of the England team the last few years and he’s a valued member of the squad.
‘But in the end I’ve got to look at performances over the last 18 months with their clubs and the three lads we picked were the three best goalkeepers in the league this year.’
Hart’s club career still needs to be clarified with the 31-year-old set to return to City after his unsuccessful season-long loan at West Ham.
He is likely to leave the Premier League champions this summer as Pep Guardiola has him far down the pecking order.