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Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart is still first choice for England

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England manager Roy Hodgson has reiterated that Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart is still first choice for the national team.

Hart has had an indifferent season and it has been rumoured that his place could be under threat for Friday's World Cup qualifier in San Marino.

But Hart looks set to start ahead of the newly recalled West Brom shot-stopper Ben Foster.

Hodgson told Sky Sports: "I've been more than happy with Joe Hart as England's keeper.

"At the moment, he is the number one as far as I'm concerned."

Hodgson also believes that Hart knows he has to perform if he wants to keep his place in the team.

He added: "I don't think Joe would ever take his place for granted. I think that would be a harsh criticism of him."

Hart was between the sticks for City's 2-0 defeat away at Everton on Saturday and was beaten by a long-range effort from Everton midfielder, and fellow England international, Leon Osman.

The Manchester City number one has also recently been criticised by club manager Roberto Mancini, however, Hodgson believes the recent comments have been unfair.

He said: "Joe doesn't seem to be playing that badly and when I've seen him, he's done well.

"Not many people would contest he is the number one keeper in the country and I'm happy to have him."

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Topics:
Internationals
Joe Hart
Football
Manchester City

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