BRENDAN RODGERS paid a glowing tribute to Joe Hart who played his last game for Celtic in their Scottish Cup Final triumph over Rangers at Hampden yesterday.

The Hoops boss claimed the 37-year-old keeper was “irreplaceable” after his three seasons at Parkhead in which he won three Premiership titles, two Scottish Cups and two League Cups.

Hart arrived in a cut-price £1million switch from Spurs in August 2021 as Ange Postecoglou searched for a new No.1 after failing to be impressed by Vasilis Barkas after just one game.

FIST IN TIME…Joe Hart reacts to a cross into the box with a strong punch as Daizen Maeda and Liam Scales look on.

The 75 times-capped one-time England international answered the SOS, made his debut 48 hours after his arrival in a 4-2 win in a Europa League qualifier against FK Jablonec and was a first-team mainstay from day one.

Hart signed off with a clean sheet after playing his part in the Hoops’ record 42nd success in the 150-year-old competition.

It was an emotional grand finale for the netminder and Rodgers said: “He’s the type of personality who is irreplaceable.

“I said to the players after Joe’s last training session on Friday. This is a guy who has worked for 21 years and you would never have thought it.

“We have some young players who have just completed their first season training with us and have had 200 sessions over the course of the season. I reckon Joe has done something like 4200 training sessions in his career!

“And, do you know what, every time I see him in training, it’s like his first one, wanting to show everyone how good he is.”

THE FINAL FAREWELL…Joe Hart salutes the Celtic support at Hampden with Kyogo Furuhashi joining in the applause after the Scottish Cup triumph.
Rodgers, speaking to Premier Sports TV, continued: “His enthusiasm, his love of the game, his leadership and everything about the man is top class.
“He’s been an amzing leader in the changing room and he has taken that leadersip onto the field. He’s irreplaceable for what he is.
“And what a way for him to finish. He’s a double winner at a club that’ll idolise him now for the rest of his life. I’m just so pleased for him.”
The Hoops gaffer added: “However, the club moves on, we all move on and we now have to find someone to come in and take over next season.”
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