Belfast Telegraph

Hart wants big finish

Goalkeeper Joe Hart is determined not to let Manchester City's season end with a whimper.

The England number one has made a rallying call to his team-mates in the hope of sparking a charge through the closing games of the year.

City's campaign has fallen apart in 2015 with a run of three wins in 12 games costing them heavily in the Barclays Premier League, FA Cup and in Europe.

City now seem unlikely to retain their title having fallen six points behind Chelsea, who have a game in hand, while they were ousted from the Champions League by a far superior Barcelona side on Wednesday.

But Hart is not ready to concede defeat to Chelsea yet and insists City, who host West Brom on Saturday, still have a lot to play for.

The 27-year-old said: "I will never give up, ever, and I could safely say that nobody in our dressing room will ever give up either. We will see where that takes us.

"West Brom is a huge game and we turn our focus to that. We have no excuse not to throw everything at the Premier League now and give our all - to the fans, the owner, to everyone.

"Every game is a must-win now. We have no time to lick our wounds, we have to fly into that game.

"We have to win every game, and that is how we will go into it, and see where it takes us.

"We have had a few knocks this season, but we have proved it time and time again, and so have our fans, that we come back and we keep fighting."

City's recent form has brought heavy criticism of the team and manager Manuel Pellegrini, who could now be facing a fight to keep his job.

But Hart, who was outstanding in Wednesday's 1-0 loss at the Nou Camp, believes all the negativity coming the team's way is only par for the course and is not overly concerned.

He said: "That's part of being at Man City. We all get talked about. I have been the worst keeper in the world recently and Vinny (Kompany) has been the worst defender in the world.

"We have all had our moment. That's the role of being at Man City. If we don't win we are going to get slaughtered."

It has also been suggested the squad needs a shake-up in the summer but Hart continues to back his current team-mates.

He said: "We have nine games left with his fantastically talented squad. We have a lot of tired legs but we have players to come in. They are good players. They can freshen us up. I think we have what we need."

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