AMBITIOUS Everton are keen to make a statement of intent under their new super-rich owner … and, according to several sources, Manchester City keeper Joe Hart is in their sights.
Farhad Moshiri – who completed his takeover at Goodison Park in February – is ready to splash the cash in a bid to make the Toffees a major force in English football after they ended this season in 11th place – their worst finish since 2006.
The Sun reports: “The Iranian money man is ready to throw around £40million at a bid for the Manchester City star in the hope that Pep Guardiola can be persuaded to sell.
“And the Goodison supremo will back that up with a fortune for Hart, who will be offered around £200,000-a-week.”
Everton – who are still to appoint a manager following the sacking of Roberto Martinez earlier this month – are in the hunt for a new keeper after letting veteran Tim Howard go, while his deputy Joel Robles hasn’t shown the consistency needed to fill the vacancy.
Hart’s future at City appeared fairly secure under Manuel Pellegrini but the imminent arrival of Pep Guardiola may well change that, with the former Bayern Munich boss believed to prefer a keeper who is better with the ball at his feet.
It would certainly present an interesting dilemma for Hart. While Everton are clearly highly ambitious, it’s likely the England keeper would have to forego Champions League football – at least for the first couple of seasons – if he did join the Merseyside outfit.
But then, if he did stay at City and was forced to play second fiddle, it would spell trouble for his future with England.
Should Hart stay at City?