Wednesday 18 October 2017

Slaven Bilic: No West Ham interest in Joe Hart

Joe Hart could return to England next season
Joe Hart could return to England next season

West Ham boss Slaven Bilic has no interest in a summer move for Joe Hart.

England goalkeeper Hart is expected to be available at the end of the season when his loan spell with Torino finishes.

The 29-year-old moved to Italy during the summer transfer window after losing his place at Manchester City and is reportedly keen on returning to England.

Bilic has this week been linked with a summer swoop for Hart but the Croatian insists he is happy with first-choice keeper Darren Randolph and back-up Adrian.

"We're not linked with him," said Bilic. "Well, basically we are linked with every player.

"On one hand I rate Joe Hart highly, he's a great goalkeeper and a great personality.

"But on the other hand I said in every transfer window if there is one position that we are not even thinking about changing that's the goalkeeping position.

"I already have two great goalkeepers so that is not the case, no."

Bilic is once again under scrutiny after West Ham's recent upturn in form came shuddering to a halt with a midweek 4-0 home defeat by Manchester City.

Former City boss Roberto Mancini was in London to watch his old club and has been linked with the Hammers job should they slide back down the table.

But Bilic shrugged off the rumours and insisted he is concentrating on the job in hand, starting at Southampton on Saturday.

"I'm not surprised, those rumours happened last year, it happened this year, it happens at most clubs," he said.

"I'm not worried about it. I am trying to do a good job and I think I am doing. Have there been discussions with the board? No, not at all."

EFL Cup finalists Southampton have slipped below the Hammers after picking up just three points from a possible 18, much to Bilic's surprise.

"They've had a great run in the League Cup, I remembered they played some really good football and played some good away games - and then I saw they are below us," he added.

"I like the way they play, obviously they have their ups and downs and played a lot of games because of Europe and the EFL Cup.

"They have some new players and some injuries, and it will be a tough game for us and for them.

"It is an important game because we are only one point above them and we want to make that gap bigger."

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