Before the Italian left the club he had a deal for the Stoke City ‘keeper all lined up, claims his former right-hand man.
David Platt has further heaped pressure upon Joe Hart by claiming that he would have been out the door this summer had Roberto Mancini stayed with City.
Platt, who was Mancini’s assistant during his time at City, revealed in an interview with Al Jazeera that the pair already had a replacement in mind: “If Mancini and I were still at Man City this year, Joe Hart wouldn’t be there, we made a decision to sign Asmir Begovic.”
This could go some way to explaining Stoke City’s acquisition of Birmingham prospect and England international Jack Butland.
Hart was instrumental in City’s title win two seasons ago, widely heralded as the best ‘keeper in the Premier League and one of the most consistent and impressive in Europe.
However Hart’s sensational form dropped off as he made several high-profile blunders last season. This trend has resurfaced worryingly early this year, as Hart was at the centre of City’s shock defeat to Cardiff City on Sunday.
City conceded twice to set pieces as Cardiff pulled off the biggest shock of the season so far, their makeshift back line failing to cope against the Premier League new boys.
Of course Hart is not entirely to blame, and this will surely strengthen City’s resolve to sign a new centre-back – the Citizens have already been linked with Malaga’s Martin Demichelis and Real Madrid’s Pepe.