No ‘Panenka’ pain for Joe Hart
Italian stalwart Pirlo chipped his penalty in their shootout win over Hart’s side in their quarter-final meeting of the European championships.
Hart is set to face Pirlo again in Group D at the 2014 World Cup but the Manchester City custodian insisted he was not fazed by the dishonour of being beaten in such nonchalant fashion by the Juve man.
“He scored. I don’t think he did it to embarrass me. He just tried to get it in the net and they won the shootout. That’s it,” Hart said.
Pirlo’s recent release of his autobiography revealed he only decided to chip Hart at the last minute, given the Englishman’s frenzied tactics in the shootout.
“I made my decision right at the last second, when I saw Joe Hart, the England goalie, doing all sorts on his line,” Pirlo wrote.
“As I began my run-up, I still hadn’t decided what I was going to do. And then he moved and my mind was made up. It was all impromptu, not premeditated.
“The only way I could see pushing my chances of scoring close to 100 per cent. There was absolutely no showboating about it – that’s not my style.”
Hart is England’s first-choice goalkeeper but the 27-year-old said he was wary of being overtaken by Ben Foster (West Bromwich Albion) and Fraser Forster (Celtic).
“I’m not there yet, I’m still pushing hard,” Hart said.
“We have two great goalkeepers in the squad. We have some fantastic talent.
“Ben has had a fantastic season and Fraser has kept clean sheet after clean sheet at Celtic.
“I’m fully aware of what’s around me and it’s an enjoyable position to be in.
“I’m just fighting to keep it.”
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