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Is Joe Hart still the Hammers number one?

Is Joe Hart still the Hammers’ number one?

The goalkeeper situation at West Ham United took a twist on December 3, as a spirited showing by stand-in stopper Adrian firmly put the pressure on Joe Hart. But is the Englishman still number one for the Hammers?

Joe Hart

Manchester United v West Ham United, 13 August 2017 (04).JPG by Ardfern (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Unfortunately for Hart, he could do nothing to avoid being left out against his parent club Manchester City that day at the Etihad due to Premier League rules, and instead had to watch as a spectator. Adrian is, of course, more loved by the London Stadium faithful, having previously been a club regular since he joined in 2013/14.

And the Spaniard seemed determined to regain the number one jersey (not literally, as no one currently at the club wears that) against the runaway league leaders Man City. Although the Hammers eventually lost 2-1, Adrian helped the scoreline stay low thanks to super saves from the likes of Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling.

His only previous three appearances this season, which were all in the EFL Cup, were in wins too against Tottenham, Bolton Wanderers and Cheltenham – the latter two were without conceding. As for Hart, in 14 total Premier League fixtures, he’s only been on the winning team twice and kept three clean sheets.

Granted, it’s difficult to judge the two as Hart played against more difficult teams on the whole and Adrian has played so few, but fans and even new boss David Moyes are beginning to change their tune about Man City-owned Hart.

It was seen as a fantastic signing earlier in the season, as it’s not often a 75-capped England international still arguably in his prime would join the Hammers these days, but it seems a drop in quality of surrounding teammates has affected his confidence and form.

Moyes even stated before the match that Hart is not used to the pressures of fighting for relegation. As it stands after matchweek 15, West Ham are down in 19th in the table and three points away from safety.

Adrian, however, has been involved in Hammers sides that have finished in the bottom half of the table three times, and certainly looked more at home with his goal being under constant threat against City.

As it stands, the bookies can’t decide whether or not the east Londoners will go down, pricing them at 10/11 in the Premier League betting both to stay up and be relegated.

West Ham could potentially find themselves without both keepers in the summer, with Hart expected to return to parent club City and Adrian surely wanting to move elsewhere if he can’t regain his place in the XI permanently.

It’s certainly a tough choice for Moyes, who recently stated that he’s confident the Hammers can beat the drop, as there are many factors to come into consideration when sticking with a keeper until the end of the season.

Adrian is certainly tried and tested for West Ham, though, and it seems the fans want him back as number one at the club.

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I've been a passionate Hammers fan since i can remember. Growing up in Canning Town i was always down Upton Park as it was only a 10 minute walk down the Barking road. Always and forever COYI ! West Ham Till I Die !

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