‘Very happy’ Hart puts Torino debut howler behind him

Ian Watson
Joe Hart: Wanted by West Ham

Joe Hart insists he has already brushed off the mistake which marred his debut for Torino and is determined to prove a success in Serie A.

The England goalkeeper, on a season-long loan with Torino after finding himself out-of-favour with Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola, was at fault for Atalanta’s equaliser last weekend when he failed to claim a corner.

But he impressed on his first press conference with his new club, speaking in Italian at the start, telling the media the words he had already learned and vowing to get to grips with the language.

“I’m studying Italian, I’m learning some important words to communicate with my team,” he said.

Hart, whose new side play at home to Empoli on Sunday, will be out to bounce back from his difficult debut and feels ready to do so.

“Mistakes can happen,” he said. “In Bergamo I was fine, I made a mistake, but my team-mates and the public have received me very well and I want to keep them happy.

“The president and the coaching staff have made me feel at home right away. (Coach Sinisa) Mihajlovic and I have a good relationship. This new experience excites me very much and I want to improve every day.”

The 29-year-old has been a fan of Italian football since childhood – “I grew up watching Serie A on TV on Sundays,” he said – and explained he was aware of the history of seven-times league champions Torino before coming to the club.

“I know there is also Juventus in town, but Torino are one of the best clubs in Italy,” said Hart. “I am very happy, this will be a great season.”

Hart enjoyed a decade at City and admitted moving to another county was “not easy”.

“But it’s part of my career and I want to take this opportunity,” he said.

Asked about a possible return to Manchester, he said: “Right now I’m at Torino and I will work for Torino.”

And on Guardiola, he said: “Everyone has their own opinions. Now I’m focused on Torino.”