Dave Edwards ready to face former housemate Joe Hart
Published 14/06/2016 | 12:06
Wales midfielder Dave Edwards is ready to make Joe Hart pay again - after charging him £50 rent as his landlord.
Hart, the 30-year-old and England number one, grew up in Shrewsbury and shared a house with Edwards when the latter bought his first home.
The friends are preparing to face each other in Thursday's crunch Euro 2016 clash in Lens following England's heartbreaking late draw 1-1 with Russia after Edwards helped Wales beat Slovakia 2-1 in Group B on Saturday.
He is likely to start again after the weekend's victory in Bordeaux and admits he cannot get his head around the former housemates playing in France.
"We became very close and when I bought my first house in Shrewsbury - it was just a two bed terrace - Joe rented a room off me and helped me with the bills," said Wolves star Edwards, who has 33 caps for his country.
"It was £50 a week - mates' rates. We split the shopping but he was terribly messy.
"At that point he was just starting to get interest from bigger clubs and different sponsorship deals so there was boxes of clothes and boots everywhere - he was very untidy.
"We're really good friends and still speak now, the possibility of playing against each other in a major tournament is bizarre.
"Joe and I came through together. He was a year below but when I joined at 16 he was already playing for the under-16s.
"We were the two who stuck together in the youth team and when we started training with the first team."
Hart moved from Shrewsbury to Manchester City in 2006 while Edwards joined Luton in 2007 before signing for Wolves a year later.
It is not the first time the friends have faced off as Edwards scored the winner against Hart when Wolves beat Manchester City 2-1 in 2010.
But he knows group leaders Wales will have to be at their best to beat Hart at the Stade Bollaert and rates him as one of the best in the world.
"It's amazing how far we have come. Joe is on another level, a Premier League winner and in a good England team," Edwards told Press Association Sport.
"At Shrewsbury he always stood out. He looked like a 25-year-old when he was 16 or 17, he was very commanding and always had that presence. I always knew he would be a top player.
"Manuel Neuer, David De Gea, Hugo Lloris - he's definitely among them."