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Joe Hart Has Torino Debut To Forget

joe-hart-torinoJoe Hart’s loan spell started poorly at Torino after the Serie A outfit lost 2-1 to Atalanta on Sunday.

Torino had just gone ahead when the England goalkeeper, who moved to Italy on transfer deadline day after losing his place at Manchester City, gifted Andrea Masiello an equaliser when he made a mess of a punch from a corner.

Hart was beaten again eight minutes from full-time as Franck Kessie beat him from the penalty spot.

Hart had a couple of nervous moments in the first half, needing a combination of good fortune and poor finishing to ensure a clean sheet by half-time.

Having had nothing to do for the first 20 minutes, Hart’s first contribution was to dive down to get a hand to a low drilled cross from Kessie.

The ball fell at the feet of Abdoulay Konko, whose follow-up shot beat Hart but hit his Atalanta team-mate Mauricio Pinilla, who inadvertently deflected it wide.

Torino went ahead in the 54th minute when Iago Falque’s free-kick sailed past the seemingly unsighted Atalanta goalkeeper Marco Sportiello.

But barely a minute later Hart came off his line to clear a corner, only to misjudge the flight of the ball, overstretch and leave Masiello with a tap-in from six yards.

Hart had the chance to make amends after Lorenzo De Silvestri fouled Alejandro Gomez in the box, but Kessie sent him the wrong way from the spot.

After his Manchester City replacement Claudio Bravo committed a huge blunder on debut when dropping a cross at Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s feet, the last thing Hart would have wanted was to do the same thing.

But coming for a 56th-minute corner he could only get one hand on the ball and pushed it into Andrea Masiello’s path, who promptly turned the ball in the empty net to score Atalanta’s equaliser.

The part of his game under the most scrutiny after Pep Guardiola decided Hart was not the one for him.

Torino were keen to play the ball out from the back and Hart always made himself available for a pass, though he tended to keep his distribution short and risk free.

His Italian may not be fluent but Hart was often seen shouting and gesturing to his defenders, keeping them in position when Atalanta came forward.

There was a slight mix up in the 42nd minute when a poor pass into the area looked certain to be claimed by Hart down low at his near post, only for one of his centre-backs to boot the ball out for a throw.

His distribution was under the microscope and it was fine. Unfortunately for him, the dropped catch will make the headlines.

Coming just a day after his replacement’s very similar error, Hart did not take his chance to show why he should still be No 1 at the Etihad. He had very little to do but his mistake was a key factor in his side’s defeat.