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“I’m not that guy” – 348-appearance Manchester City legend reveals brutal Pep Guardiola meeting in emotional 190-word recollection



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Manchester City legend Joe Hart has emotionally reflected on being dropped by manager Pep Guardiola in 2016.

The 37-year-old retired from professional football last month, having helped Celtic to the Scottish Premiership title during his final campaign after moving to Glasgow in August 2021, following a turbulent five-year period.

Hart, who moved to Manchester City as a teenager, was dramatically axed by manager Pep Guardiola following his arrival at the Etihad Stadium in 2016, as the Catalan made a series of sweeping changes after joining from Bayern Munich.

The goalkeeper spent 12 years at Manchester City and was part of the team that won the club’s first Premier League title in 2012, making 348 appearances before completing a permanent exit from east Manchester in 2018.

The Englishman made his final appearance for the Sky Blues in August 2016 against Steaua Bucharest in the UEFA Champions League, and is the only goalkeeper to win four Premier League Golden Glove awards.

Hart, who also played 75 times for England, joined the Blues in 2006 from Shrewsbury for a fee of only £600,000, and became number one under the management of Roberto Mancini, following a series of loan spells at Blackpool, Tranmere and Birmingham City.

The shot-stopper won two Premier League titles, the FA Cup and the League Cup with Manchester City, and spent time at Torino, West Ham, Burnley, and Tottenham after being dropped by Guardiola.

Speaking on the High Performance Podcast, Hart has now reflected on his exit from Manchester City, after being axed by manager Guardiola during the summer of 2016.

“It wasn’t painful, it was frustrating. It was a great man who had a vision that I didn’t fit into,” he said.

“He told me that as much as he admired me as person, he din’t think I could fit into his system, to which I was like: ‘Look, I don’t agree with you but that’s your opinion. Is that something we can work on together? Or is that something where I need to find a new home?’

‘To which [Pep] said I am happy to work but I can’t put everything aside that I’m trying to do, I’m here to win.’

“And I respect that. He was here to win, he wasn’t here to give me a good career or look after me, but I’m living in that world where I wanted to play for England, I wanted to play at the highest possible level. You can’t play for England if you’re being trialled at a football club.

“Not many people survived [at Manchester City], and you know the ones that did survive, they’re literally some of the best players in the world to have ever played the game. And I’m alright, but I’m not that guy.”

Hart is currently a pundit for the BBC at the European Championship in Germany, and is also expected to be offered an ambassadorial role at Manchester City following his recent retirement.