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Hart: I am under no illusions Madrid are going to sell Courtois and bring me in

  /  autty

Joe Hart is a free agent for the first time in his 17-year career after his contract at Burnley expired on June 30, yet the English goalkeeper is remaining somewhat optimistic about his potential opportunities moving forward.

The former Manchester City shot-stopper even joked that he would happily come in and replace Thibaut Courtois at Real Madrid.

"The fact I have had to sit on the bench for 18 months in the Premier League is not going to define or crush me," Hart told the BBC.

"I remember who I am. I remember playing for my local Sunday league team and trying to get into the Shrewsbury Town first team.

"I learned early - you need to keep things in perspective.

"You can have great things said about you in football, but you have to be strong on self-criticism, analyse what you are doing and be comfortable with it.

"Maybe from the outside, people are thinking it is a time for panic, but from the inside it is a time to look forward and see all the opportunities.

"I am young when it comes to goalkeeping. I am even younger when it comes to the mental age of a guy who just wants to go in goal and have people whack balls at him.

"I am under no illusions that Real Madrid are going to knock my door down, get Courtois out and bring me in.

"But there is plenty more to come from me.

"I just need someone to believe in me and I will repay that faith."

The 33-year-old has represented England on 75 occasions.