Former Manchester City player Joey Barton is lashing out at his former club for their treatment of goalkeeper Joe Hart.
Hart, 29, was dropped to the bench by new manager Pep Guardiola in the opening game of the season, a 2-1 win over Sunderland, and opted to go with Willy Caballero instead of Hart. The England international has been the first choice between the posts for eight seasons, but is now rumored to be on his way out as Guardiola looks to bring in Claudio Bravo from his former club Barcelona.
Barton, who spent five years in the City first team before leaving the club in 2007, thinks the club is wrong to treat Hart this way.
“It is not the club I left,” Barton said.
“The club I left and watch now are two totally different organisations. The club I played for wouldn’t have treated a player that had been a servant for as long as Joe has in the manner that it has. I think it is disgusting.
“He is a full international, somebody who, probably before City took the money, could have gone on to bigger and better things himself but stayed and wanted to be at City.
“I don’t see what he has done wrong to be treated the way he has. His attitude isn’t terrible. I don’t like this. It is common human decency, regardless of how good a coach you are. Why treat him like that?
“I’ve watched Caballero and are you telling me Caballero is better with his feet than Joe Hart? I haven’t seen it.
“Why not let him fight for his place and then if he is not good enough say: ‘I have given him an opportunity.’ That’s what every manager should do, give everyone an opportunity.”