What could Joe Hart’s Celtic contract future hold?

Celtic are rumoured to be looking to tie down Liam Scales to a new contract this season, adding to the plethora of players who also extended their stay at the club earlier in the season.

The club have been making strides to maintain those players that they see as important whilst also cutting off those that they deem to be surplus to requirements at the same time.

This is evidenced in the January deadline day sale of David Turnbull to Cardiff City. The club decided to cash in on the former Motherwell man for around £2million rather than seeing him leave on a free transfer in the summer upon the expiry of his contract.

A man who finds himself facing a similar situation of limbo come the summer is Joe Hart. The experienced Englishman has been a stalwart in this Celtic team under both Ange Postecoglou and Brendan Rodgers, but sees his contract run out at the end of the season and talks of a new deal haven’t surfaced in the media as of yet.

Given Hart’s status as a first-team starter, this would normally be straight-forward answer, give him a new contract.

The difference here however is that Hart is now 36, meaning the next contract he signs in his career could well be his last.

But with Hart’s contract soon coming to an end, what should Celtic do, and what could Joe Hart want?

What Should Celtic Do?
Hart is clearly a well-liked member of this Celtic team. He is someone that gets along well with his squad and his experience is vital to have around the club.

Someone that has seen the highest of highs in world football coming to Celtic is something that doesn’t happen very often these days, so having someone like Hart around the club for others to learn from is absolutely vital.

However, it is no secret that Celtic are looking to improve their goalkeeping position. It was identified as a problem position by the club in the summer, and January rumours were swirling liking Celtic with a number of different goalkeepers such as Real Madrid’s Andriy Lunin and Liverpool’s Caoimhin Kelleher.

As much as Hart has been an important player over the last few weeks, the margin for errors is still there with Hart, and if Celtic wish to progress further in European competitions, improving upon the goalkeeping position is a must.

Replacing Hart as first-team starting goalkeeper shouldn’t require cutting ties with Hart entirely. As previously mentioned, having someone like him around the club is vital, but is being a backup goalkeeper at Celtic something that he would be content with.

What may Joe Hart want?
As a keeper now in the twilight years of his career, Hart will have relished his time at Celtic, winning countless trophies when at a point it looked like he may never see a piece of silverware again in his career.

However, with the time to hang up the goalkeeping gloves perhaps just a few more seasons a way, you would think Hart would want to be playing as often as he possibly can.

He has previously spoken of his love for Shrewsbury Town, the first-ever club the former England international has played for, and a return to the Shrews for one final run at the club could be something that potentially interests him.

If Hart is to stay at Celtic beyond this season, there may have to be assurances over a starting position to ensure he signs on for another season.

Leave a Reply