Wayne Rooney labels Manchester City's Joe Hart the 'best keeper in the world'
Thursday 04 October 2012
Joe Hart was hailed as the world's best goalkeeper by Wayne Rooney after a stunning performance kept Manchester City's Champions League hopes alive.
The Manchester United striker was quick to praise City's number one - also his England team-mate - after Hart produced a series of world-class saves in a pulsating 1-1 draw with Borussia Dortmund at the Etihad Stadium.
Although City also created a number of chances, Hart's performance kept them in the contest before Mario Balotelli snatched a first point in Group D with a contentious last-minute penalty.
Hart denied the German champions on eight occasions and Rooney - whose club boss Sir Alex Ferguson was in the crowd - was one of many observers hugely impressed.
Rooney wrote on Twitter: "Have to say joe hart has been incredible. For me best keeper in the world."
Hart could do little to prevent Dortmund taking the lead just after the hour, although he got a hand to Marco Reus' shot, after Jack Rodwell gifted the forward possession.
After that Dortmund stepped up the pressure but were unable to add to their lead and were left seething when Neven Subotic was harshly ruled to have handled at point-blank range from Sergio Aguero.
Roman Weidenfeller, who also had a fine game, could not save from substitute Balotelli from the spot and City escaped with a draw.
City boss Roberto Mancini said: "Joe Hart saved us from an incredible defeat because he saved everything and we should say thank you to him.
"I don't know if it is the best performance in football history but he did very well."
Despite Hart's brilliance, City have still not kept a clean sheet all season and the defence is a serious area of concern for Mancini.
The Italian said: "We didn't play well. We conceded a lot of chances to them and I am really disappointed by our performance.
"In the first half we had three or four incredible chances, but if you don't defend, if you don't run like Borussia Dortmund did, it is difficult.
"This is my problem - it is my job. I will solve this problem."
City played a full part in an end-to-end first half, denying Aguero twice and Samir Nasri with fine saves. He kept out another Aguero effort late on.
Hart told Sky Sports: "We've got to be happy with a point.
"I thought Borussia Dortmund were different class. It took a good defensive effort to keep it at one.
"The pass was a bit short and they took the chance.
"For them to be the seed four team shows what a group we're in."
Subotic was angered by the penalty decision and felt he could not get his arm out of the way as Aguero hooked in the ball.
The defender said: "I have a hand, I can't cut it off. It was never in my life a penalty."
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