Manchester United: Jose Mourinho targets Manchester City's Joe Hart as David de Gea replacement

Karthick Arvinth
Joe Hart

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has identified England goalkeeper Joe Hart as a priority transfer target should David de Gea be sold to Real Madrid in the summer, according to reports.

Hart, 30, was signed by Torino on a season-long loan in August after being told by Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola that he was free to leave.

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Torino are reportedly interested in extending Hart's loan deal by an additional year after being impressed by his performances, but the England international is understood to prefer a return to the Premier League.

The Scottish Daily Record says Mourinho will move for Hart as an insurance policy should De Gea decide to move to Madrid in the summer.

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While City will be reluctant to do business with their biggest rivals, the paper said they have few options to sell Hart elsewhere.

Hart said in an interview in March that he is unlikely to return to City when his loan spell with Torino ends in the summer.

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The 30-year-old told the BBC that he remains "surplus to requirements" at the Etihad Stadium and that he does not see himself playing for his parent club again.

He added that he would "love" to play in the Premier League again next season but that his priority was finding a club where he felt wanted.

"I love the Premier League, I absolutely love Premier League games. Removing myself a footballer, I watch the Premier League. It's a great league, fantastic football is played in it," Hart said.

Citing sources, the Daily Record said that De Gea will not request a transfer to join Real at the end of the season, even though he has made clear his desire to move to the Spanish capital at some point in the future.

United will demand a world record transfer fee for the Spaniard should Madrid make a bid in the summer, according to the report.

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