This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Derby County have been linked with a move for Joe Hart, who is a free agent now on the back of his spell at Burnley coming to an end.
The goalkeeper has seen his career decline since the days he was a Premier League champion with Man City and fully established England international, with his spell at Burnley not offering a chance to get back to the top.
Now, Football Insider report how the 33-year-old is an option for Derby this summer as Phillip Cocu looks to strengthen.
Our writers discuss that link…
I think Hart could be a decent signing for Derby.
Kelle Roos and Ben Hamer have both been a bit shaky in-between the sticks for the Rams this season, and with the latter returning to parent club Huddersfield, Roos needs competition and needs an experienced shot-stopper to come in and help him.
Hart hasn’t played a lot of games in recent seasons which is a risk in itself, but he is a vastly experienced professional who could be excellent in the dressing room, as Phillip Cocu’s side look to close the gap on the play-off places next season.
Hart’s wages are likely to be quite high, though, as whilst the goalkeeping area needs strengthen, they cannot afford to blow a large chunk of their budget on the former England man. Then again, they did manage to sign Wayne Rooney, so if it needs to be done, it’ll be done.
He’d be an excellent addition.
Hart has shown that he can still perform to a high standard, having previously played for Burnley.
He’s endured a frustrating few months though, having been behind Nick Pope in the pecking order at Turf Moor.
Therefore, he’ll be looking at finding regular game time as he heads towards the later stages of his career.
A move to Derby County could present him with the ideal opportunity to do just that, with the Rams looking for another goalkeeper after Ben Hamer’s loan spell with the club reached a conclusion.
I think he’d be somewhat of a coup for the Rams bearing in mind they’re still in the Championship, and I think he’d fancy his chances of forcing his way into the starting XI relatively quickly if he signed for Phillip Cocu’s side.
Quiz: Do you remember which club Derby County signed these 15 players from?
Depends which Joe Hart turns up really.
If Derby get something like the Manchester City goalkeeper at his best where he was undoubtedly England’s best stopper then what a signing it could be.
However, if they get him low on confidence, as he has been, we could see him struggle even a division down, as Jack Butland has at times.
For me, I think linking up with Wayne Rooney could actually help him in that regard and we might see him enjoy a decent spell.
He won’t get back to his best, but he’s still a good goalkeeper that could be one of the best in the league by far if he is on his mettle.