Joe Hart’s Serie A baptism of fire didn’t quite go to plan, with a big mistake costing Torino a potential point last weekend.
Settling into a new country is never nice, and already having some friends in the area certainly helps.
Thankfully, Joe Hart knew someone in Italy, but he wasn’t a footballer.
No, the England goalkeeper’s man in Italy happens to be basketball player Giuseppe Poeta, who he met through Massimo Simonetta, first team sport therapist at Manchester City, having previously worked for the Bologna basketball team as a physio.
Speaking to Gazzetta dello Sport, Poeta, who now plays for Auxilium CUS Torino, explained he received a phone call from the England goalkeeper when the loan from Manchester City went through.
He said: “When Joe signed for Toro, he asked me advice in finding a house, and I told him he should look for accommodation in the centre of town, which is beautiful and peaceful.”
The two sportsmen are apparently in touch on a daily basis, calling each other and sending each other messages on WhatsApp, with a meal planned in the next few days.
Poets explained: “Joe is a top guy and I will try and give him a hand with settling in the city. And there is no doubt he needs to learn Italian to get a grip on the Torino defence. I’ll also help with that.”
The goalkeeper’s communication problem has already been touched upon by Torino’s captain Cesare Bovo, who said that while Hart is a ‘helpful and approachable guy’, the language barrier was an issue.
With a free teacher already in town, it shouldn’t take too long.
It’s a good thing the English are renowned around the world for learning new languages quickly, right?