Reports suggest that Joe Hart is set to undergo a medical at Burnley ahead of his switch from Manchester City.
Hart spent last season on loan at the Hammers. Though, his lackluster form – along with the arrival of Lukasz Fabianksi – will likely mean the club won’t look to extend the 31-year-old’s stay.
Burnley’s first two goalkeeping options are both injured, meaning that more external recruitments could be made by Sean Dyche to avert crisis.
How does Joe Hart statistically match up against his peers at both Burnley and West Ham? Let’s find out.
Once upon a time, Joe Hart was argued as one of the league’s best goalkeepers, even occupying the England number one jersey for a number of years.
After returning from a loan spell at Birmingham City, Hart became an integral part of the Manchester City side. He was an enforcer between the sticks. But that soon changed.
A turbulent time amongst a Manchester City side destined for greatness meant that Joe Hart was exiled from the Sky Blues. The arrivals of Claudio Bravo and Willy Caballero were the nail in the coffin.
In pursuit of first-team action, Hart went on loan to Italian side, Torino. He then moved to West Ham where he spent last season on loan. Hart shared goalkeeping dutied with Adrian throughout this season, but still seemed a shell of his former self.
I’d like to preface this by saying that Tom Heaton was injured for the vast majority of last season. So, instead, I’ve decided to show some statistics from his remarkable 2016/17 campaign.
Also, I realise it’s unfair comparing Hart’s stats from just 19 games to those of keepers who featured in 35+. But to find a season where Hart featured this much in the Premier League would take some deep digging.
Upon first glance, the stats certainly do not favour Hart. With clean sheets, he ties his Hammers compadre Adrian with a joint-lowest of four.
With total saves last season, Hart comes bottom of the crop with just 47. Meanwhile, new Hammers recruit Lukasz Fabianski doubled that (and then some) with 105.
Given the poor quality of the Swansea defence last season, 105 saves is remarkable. I guess this is exactly the kind of news Hammers fans want to hear.
However, one area where Hart doesn’t rank bottom out of the five keepers is goals conceded. Hart conceded 39 goals in the Premier League last season, whilst Fabianski actually conceded the most (55).
Although, when you take into consideration the number of games those goals were conceded in, it’s actually a very poor record. It equates to more than two goals conceded per game, the worst ratio out of the five.
In fact, Nick Pope even managed to concede fewer goals than the number of games he played last season. Which is mightily impressive.
To conclude, it’s clear that a move for Joe Hart by Burnley is a simple fix to a short-term problem.
There’s no way that, based on his current form, Hart would start ahead of a fully fit Nick Pope or Tom Heaton.
Hart has just one year left on his Manchester City contract, so he needs to find a permanent home sharpish.
If there’s one thing West Ham fans can take away from this deal, it’s that they should be thankful they finally have a consistent and reliable keeper between the posts in Lukasz Fabianski.