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 are interested in signing goalkeeper Joe Hart on a free transfer, according to reputable journalist Alan Nixon.
The 33-year-old is set to leave Burnley for nothing at the end of the month, with his contract at Turf Moor soon coming to an end.
The 75-time England international has made only three appearances in 2019/20, all of which coming in the FA Cup, with West Brom and Derby now said to be interested depending on whether they get promoted or not.
West Brom. Deffo in the Joe Hart hunt. Need to go up to boost hopes. Derby in a similar situation.
— Alan Nixon (@reluctantnicko) June 28, 2020
Phillip Cocu may look to strengthen his goalkeeping options this summer, with Huddersfield Town loanee Ben Hamer set to return to the John Smith’s Stadium at the end of the season.
Here, the FLW team discuss the potential signing of Hart for Derby…
I think this could be a really interesting and positive move from a Derby perspective.
Things haven’t worked out for Hart at Burnley and he has had his struggles in recent years but he’s shown his quality in the past and could be a fantastic addition – particularly at Championship level.
With Ben Hamer set to return to Huddersfield at the end of the season, the Rams will be on the lookout for a replacement and signing Hart as a free agent could be a smart move – as long as the deal isn’t too costly.
You feel the 33-year-old would be a fantastic person to have in and around the squad as well, given his experience.
Cocu is building something really exciting at Pride Park and a move there could be an appealing prospect for Hart, particularly with his former England teammate Wayne Rooney there.
Bringing in a player with the experience Hart has would be a tremendous coup for Derby.
Granted, Hart has barely played this season and is approaching the latter stages of his career, but he would still a job for Derby for a few years.
Kelle Roos isn’t reliable enough to be Derby’s first-choice goalkeeper, in my view, so bringing in a player like Hart would really improve him and improve Cocu’s options in-between the sticks.
He might be on high wages, but if they can tempt him to take a wage cut and join the Rams, it would signal a massive statement of intent.
If they don’t go up, then he would definitely help them in their quest for promotion next term.
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He could be a decent addition.
I’m not expecting the Rams to sign Ben Hamer permanently as he’s hardly set the world alight since signing for the club.
I think any potential deal for Hart depends on whether Derby will be playing their football in the Premier League or not.
He’s got experience of playing in the top-flight for a number of seasons, and will be keen to obtain regular game time to make up for a frustrating few seasons where he has had to make do with a spot on the substitutes bench.
I think he’d get the game time he wants with Derby, but the Rams will know that they face a real battle to land his signature, with West Brom being just one of the other teams interested in signing for the former England shot-stopper.
I like the look of this.
Derby are in need of strengthening the goalkeeping department in the transfer window, with Ben Hamer set to leave after his loan spell and Kelle Roos struggling with inconsistent form.
The Rams need an experienced head in between the sticks and with Scott Carson likely to stay at Man City, moving for Joe Hart could be a really wise move.
The 33-year-old has a plethora of experience in English football, and his presence in the Derby goal could work wonders for what is becoming an increasingly youthful team.
The more experienced characters that Derby have in the dressing room alongside Rooney the better, and I could see Hart rejuvenating his career at Pride Park.
It’s been a poor few seasons for Hart, who more often than not has had to play second fiddle, but I could see him afforded a starting berth at Derby.