Champions League

Hart itching for return

2014-09-29 16:00

Manchester - England goalkeeper Joe Hart will return for Manchester City in their Champions League match at home to AS Roma on Tuesday after being replaced by Willy Caballero for the last two games.

Hart sat on the bench for his team's 4-2 win at Hull City in the Premier League and Argentine Caballero, signed from Malaga this year, produced a solid display.

He was also rested for last week's League Cup thrashing of Sheffield Wednesday and while he is clearly still manager Manuel Pellegrini's first choice for the big games, he is not a fan of watching from the sidelines.

"Of course, I want to play every game, that is my nature, my professionalism," Hart told a news conference ahead of the vital game against the Italians in Group E.

"I am not the manager, just a player. I live by the decisions of the manager.

"It is hard for me to see (the positives of being rested). I am sure when I retire from football I will see them but right now I am not going to see them."

Hart was in superb form in the 1-0 defeat against Bayern Munich in City's opening game, keeping the Bavarians out almost single-handedly until a deflected winner in the dying seconds.

With Roma also winning their first match, he knows that anything short of victory will leave City with an uphill battle to reach the last 16.

"It is obviously a big game after the disappointing start we had in Munich," he said. "Roma have been doing very well. We have focused a lot more on them since they were drawn in our group. They got a great result in their opening game."

While the emphasis in Munich was very much on defence, Pellegrini believes his side have now clicked as an attacking force after a tricky start to the season.

They scored seven against Wednesday and four at the weekend and the Chilean thinks they are hitting their stride.

"I think we are playing well," he said. "Maybe at the beginning of the season we didn't score so many goals here at home, especially against Chelsea and Stoke. We scored only one goal in those two games.

"But after that the team returned to its normal performance and at this moment I have a lot of trust in the team because I think we are in a good moment."

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