Skip to main content
October 19, 2018

Southgate goes for Pope, Pickford and Butland for Russian showpiece

Englad's Joe Hart’s
Englad's Joe Hart’s

Gareth Southgate is ready to signal the end of Joe Hart’s international career by axing the goalkeeper from his World Cup squad.

The Manchester City keeper, who spent last season on loan at West Ham, was informed on Monday night that he would not be in the 23-man party for Russia.

Southgate had planned to take Hart as his third-choice keeper behind Jordan Pickford and Jack Butland.

Hart made his debut for the Three Lions back in 2008, having been a regular for the Under 21s for the past two seasons.

Fabio Capello was the man in charge as Hart replaced David James at half-time in a friendly against Trinidad and Tobago in Port of Spain. England were 2-0 up when he came on, and the game eventually finished 3-0.

Hart has played in four major tournaments for England, starting at the 2010 World Cup and ending with Euro 2016 in France.

Southgate said in March: “He’s been really good, I’ve been really straight with him throughout. I spoke to him three weeks ago before he was in West Ham’s team and told him he would be in the squad on the basis of what he’s done for us.”

“He’s a good leader to have around and he’s understood everything completely. He’s played that role really well. He is everything you would hope a senior player would be.’

But the England boss has appeared to change his mind on taking Hart, who started the World Cup qualification campaign as first choice.

Hart has played sporadically at West Ham this season. And when he has played, his form has been unconvincing.

And Hart has paid the price for a difficult season. At the age of 31 it is hard to see a way back into the England fold for the senior goalkeeper.

Click here for the latest political news

Poll of the day