Joe Hart endured a nightmare return in his first game since Boxing Day

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Football fans could be forgiven for thinking that Joe Hart had slipped off the radar entirely. 

This summer marks approximately three years since his demise kicked in, starting with a catastrophic Euro 2016 as England went out to Iceland. 

Pep Guardiola promptly dropped him at Manchester City and since then, he has been on the road to Torino and West Ham. 

A permanent switch to Burnley followed in 2018. 

Yet if anything, that has represented a new low rather than an opportunity to revive his faltering Premier League career. 

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The 32-year-old quickly found himself behind Tom Heaton and Nick Pope in the pecking order and even now the former is no longer at the club, he's a long way off being first choice. 

Unfortunately, he did little to prove Sean Dyche wrong when he was finally handed a chance to impress on Wednesday night. 

Burnley faced Sunderland in the EFL Cup and the former Three Lions stopper was given a run-out. 

Dyche must have been expecting to progress against League One opposition - particularly at Turf Moor - but in fact, Hart had a nightmare. 

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He conceded three goals from just four shots, with the Clarets managing just one in reply. 

The only shot he did save was pushed straight to the feet of Tom Flanagan, who scored on the rebound.

You can see that goal below: 

It seems strange that Hart is still at Burnley at all. 

Indeed, it was expected he would move on this summer, but no top flight clubs made an approach for him. 

What do you do if you're a title-winner, an experienced international goalkeeper, but one not even deemed worthy of a regular place in the Burnley team? 

There are just a few days left for him to engineer a move abroad - or is it time he made the step down to the Championship?

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