Hart on hand to spoil Totti celebrations

Roma travelled to Turin looking to close a five-point gap to leaders Juventus after the champions scraped a 1-0 win at Palermo.

Published: 25th September 2016 06:58 PM  |   Last Updated: 25th September 2016 06:58 PM   |  A+A-

Italy Soccer Serie A_Mukh

Torino goalkeeper Joe Hart | AP


MILAN: England goalkeeper Joe Hart answered his critics with a standout performance as Torino dampened Francesco Totti's upcoming birthday celebrations with a 3-1 win over Roma on Sunday.

Roma travelled to Turin looking to close a five-point gap to leaders Juventus after the champions scraped a 1-0 win at Palermo on Saturday.

But Andrea Belotti's eighth-minute opener, the striker's header beating Wojciech Szczesny at his near post, had Luciano Spalletti's men under pressure from the off.

The Giallorossi heads dropped further when Iago Falque beat the Polish international from the spot on 53 minutes after a foul on Belotti by former Torino defender Bruno Peres.

Roma were given brief hope of a fightback when Totti, who will celebrate his 40th birthday on Tuesday, came off the bench to beat Hart from the penalty spot two minutes later.

But any hopes of a late fightback were quashed when Falque capitalised on a defensive blunder to fire a deflected shot over Szczesny halfway through the second period.

Two years ago Totti, three days after his 38th birthday, became the oldest player to score in the Champions League when he beat Hart to net a 23rd minute leveller in a 1-1 draw at Manchester City.

It was the Roma icon's 300th career goal and his first on English soil.

But the plaudits this time went to England keeper Hart, who was forced out at City by new manager Pep Guardiola amid claims his game was not up to par for the unforgiving Premier League.

Hart had also come under scrutiny in midweek when he flapped at an innocuous cross during a scoreless draw away to Pescara.

But on Sunday the 29-year-old was in superb form as Torino claimed only their second win of the season.

Hart was forced out early to steal the ball in midair from Edin Dzeko as the Bosnian ran down on goal, and then got down low to save with one hand from the striker's snap shot from close range.

Dzeko should have done better with Mohamed Salah's delivery near the end of the opening half but Hart tipped the striker's header over with one hand.

Torino took a decisive step towards the win when Falque stepped up to beat Szczesny in the Roma net on 53 minutes.

Two minutes later, Totti sent Hart the wrong way when he fired home from the spot but it proved a false dawn as Torino ended a three-game winless streak to move up to provisional eighth at seven points off the lead.

Stay up to date on all the latest Sport news with The New Indian Express App. Download now


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp