Guardiola refuses to close the door on Hart, but…

Date published: Sunday 14th August 2016 10:40

Pep Guardiola claims his decision to leave out Joe Hart could prove a one-off.

The new Manchester City boss sprang a surprise in his first match in charge by dropping the England goalkeeper in favour of Willy Caballero.

The decision is certain to fuel speculation over the 29-year-old’s future but Guardiola says his thinking could change for Tuesday’s Champions League qualifier at Steaua Bucharest.

The Spaniard, who saw his side beat Sunderland 2-1 in their Premier League opener, said:

“Of course he can play. All the players in the squad can play.

“I have a lot of respect for Joe, a lot of respect for his career. I know how good a goalkeeper he is, but today I decided for Willy. That is all.

“I think Willy make a good pre-season – really, really good. He gave me today a lot of confidence for his build-up play, for his personality and that’s why I choose him.

“In the end I have a squad and I decide what I see. I have to create a team spirit. It’s not about tactics, it’s not about anything, and I decided today for this line-up.

“That does not mean in the future they are not going to play or they are going to play.

“Willy trained in more training sessions than Joe. We spent a lot of time working two on one, three on two, four on three, using the goalkeeper in training more. That doesn’t mean Joe can’t do that.”

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