Monday 22 January 2018

Pellegrini cryptic over Hart

Joe Hart must wait to find out if he will play this weekend
Joe Hart must wait to find out if he will play this weekend

Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini continues to offer no guarantees that goalkeeper Joe Hart will return to his side in the near future.

Pellegrini was again questioned about the matter as he met with the media to preview this weekend's Barclays Premier League clash with Tottenham.

Hart was dropped earlier this month after a spell of inconsistent form but impressed on international duty by making a number of good saves in England's friendly loss to Germany on Tuesday.

That performance caught Pellegrini's eye but the Chilean has consistently fended off questions about his own team.

He said: "I don't know. We will see tomorrow the starting 11.

"It was very important for him to play with England. It was an important game for England against Germany, it is a good test.

"I think he did very well."

Costel Pantilimon has played in the club's last two Barclays Premier League games during a run of four successive appearances in all competitions.

Pellegrini recently said he believes Hart will benefit from a spell out of the side.

When asked to explain his reason for that, the 60-year-old said: "He played the last two and a half years all the games in the Premier League.

"All the players are human and can have a bad moment."

City will also be without inspirational captain Vincent Kompany again this weekend.

The Belgium defender has been out since suffering a thigh injury in the victory over Everton on October 5.

Pellegrini had hoped he might be fit to face Spurs at the Etihad Stadium but there remains no certainty as to when the 27-year-old will return.

Pellegrini said: "Vincent is still working, recovering from his last injury. Maybe the next week he will work with the whole team."

Playmaker David Silva and striker Stevan Jovetic remain on the injury list but all players away on international duty over the past fortnight have returned unscathed.

Pellegrini said: "The players that played with their national squads have come back with no problems."

Press Association

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