Bonner questions Joe Hart’s suitability to play for Brendan Rodgers’ Celtic side

Pat Bonner has questioned current keeper Joe Hart’s future in the Celtic team given the arrival of Brendan Rodgers to replace Ange Postecoglou as the former Hoops goalie reckons that the former England No.1 will struggle to adapt to the style of play that the Irishman wants his Celtic side to play.

There has been plenty of speculation that Rodgers may bring in a new goalkeeper this season as neither Ben Siegrist or Scott Bain seem like probably contenders for the first pick goalkeeper at Celtic. But it’s what happened to him at Manchester City that has Bonner believing that there could be a similar situation developing for Joe Hart at Celtic. Speaking on BBC Sportsound, the former Republic of Ireland and Celtic keeper explained his concerns for Joe Hart’s place in the Celtic team earlier today.

Joe Hart of Celtic saves from Vinícius Júnior of eal Madri during the UEFA Champions League group F match between Celtic FC and Real Madrid at Celtic Park on September 06, 2022. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

“It’s going to be a big season for Joe Hart. Joe fitted in really well into Ange’s team, he made some mistakes along the way which all goalkeepers will do, but I don’t think he was asked as many times to build the game the way that maybe Brendan would want.

“Is he capable of playing from the back? Pep came into Man City and didn’t allow him to get the opportunity because his analysis was he couldn’t do it, so he changed and that affected his confidence big time. I think he’s done exceptionally well coming up here.

“He’s a leader in the dressing room, he makes the big saves and the right moment which is a critical part to play for Celtic and Rangers (sic). You need to make big saves when you haven’t been overly active in the game.

Joe Hart gestures as he reacts at the end the UEFA Champions League Group F football match between Celtic and Real Madrid, at the Celtic Park on September 6, 2022. (Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images)

“But the part of the game that we all know is about 70 or 80 per cent of your actions now is with the ball at your feet. He’s done okay in it. Is he capable of doing it under Brendan where there might be a much greater demand? That’s the big question.

“I think he’s better than maybe some of them we’ve seen in the past. But is he up to the level that Brendan wants? Listen, Brendan brought in Dorus de Vries from Swansea because of his feet and he couldn’t keep the ball out of the net. So it’s a balance.”

Brendan Rodgers won’t be looking to make a similar mistake in bringing in a keeper like Dorus de Vries, up there with Vasilis Barkas as the worst Celtic keepers this century.

Barcelona’s Argentinian forward Lionel Messi (C) shoots to score a goal between Celtic’s Swedish defender Mikael Lustig (L) and Celtic’s Dutch goalkeeper Dorus de Vries during the UEFA Champions League football match FC Barcelona vs Celtic FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 13, 2016.Photo JOSEP LAGO/AFP via Getty Images)

Joe Hart still has a year or two in him and has been a tremendous asset to Celtic on and off the park. If and when he gets replaced it must be for a top quality keeper. And that might be a higher priority further down the line as Hart nears the end of his career playing at the top level.

Out of interest, who do you think was the better goalkeeper, Pat Bonner or Joe Hart? Definitely Hart for me…

Vasilis Barkas Photo: Andrew Milligan

Here’s Marco Tilio speaking to The Celtic Fan media including of course The Celtic Star yesterday afternoon at Celtic Park…

About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email

1 Comment

  1. Vincent McGhee on

    Pat Bonner has absolutely no right to question Joe Harts role. He was one of the worst goalkeepers Celtic ever had. And who has he been watching the past 2 years? Hart always plays out from the back. It’s what Ange wanted & it’s what Rodgers wanted with Gordon the first time around. Back in yer box Pat.