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Shilton no longer views Hart as England's No 1

Football Soccer - EURO 2016 - England Departure - Auberge du Jeu de Paume, Chantilly, France - 28/6/16 England's Joe Hart leaves Auberge du Jeu de Paume REUTERS/Lee Smith/ Livepic/ Files
Football Soccer - EURO 2016 - England Departure - Auberge du Jeu de Paume, Chantilly, France - 28/6/16England's Joe Hart leaves Auberge du Jeu de PaumeREUTERS/Lee Smith/ Livepic/ Files

By Tony Jimenez

COVENTRY, England (Reuters) - Joe Hart's below-par performances at Euro 2016 mean he should no longer be considered an automatic choice as England's number one goalkeeper, according to former international great Peter Shilton.

England were surprisingly knocked out by rank outsiders Iceland in the last 16 in France last month and Manchester City keeper Hart acknowledged he "didn't perform personally to the level that's required to push through to the quarter-finals".

"It wasn't a good tournament for Joe, his concentration levels didn't seem to be great," Shilton told Reuters in an interview while playing in this week's Farmfoods British Par-3 Golf Championship at Nailcote Hall near Coventry.

"I think maybe he's come back to the pack, alongside Jack Butland and Fraser Forster, and it's all to play for now. All goalkeepers make mistakes but the best ones make fewer and he obviously came unstuck at the Euros."

Shilton is England's most capped keeper, having made 125 appearances for his country between 1971-90.

The twice former European Cup winner with Nottingham Forest in 1979 and 1980 believes Hart, 29, is over-rated.

"I've always said I don't think Joe is as good as a lot of people think he is," said the 66-year-old Shilton. "He's a good keeper but he's prone to making errors, and not just for England.

"There's competition now and in my eyes he's not an automatic choice at the start of this season.

"New manager Sam Allardyce has reportedly said that Joe was too highly strung in the tunnel before games in the Euros and he is going to tell him to calm down but after 60-odd games for England you should know that anyway."

FRACTURED ANKLE

Shilton said Stoke City keeper Butland and Southampton rival Forster were getting better all the time.

Butland's chances of going to Euro 2016 were wrecked when he fractured his ankle in a 3-2 friendly win over Germany in Berlin in March.

"I think they're both improving," said Shilton in reference to the two England goalkeeping understudies. "They've both had some bad luck.

"Butland was very unlucky when he injured his ankle but I believe he's got character and will come back strongly this year."

Shilton did not exactly give a ringing endorsement to the Football Association's decision this month to bring in Allardyce as manager to replace Roy Hodgson.

"A lot of people may be looking at a couple of things, a) Sam has never won a big trophy and b) the style of football he plays," said the former Southampton, Stoke, Leicester City and Derby County keeper.

"Sometimes though a manager can only play a style with the players he's got. Sam's an Englishman, he's experienced, he's come up through the ranks ... and he seems a logical choice.

"You do want an Englishman in charge but by the same token you want the right man in charge," said Shilton. "We could maybe have put in Harry Redknapp, who plays a better type of football, with a younger man under him.

"But he's been out of the game for a couple of years now and that's probably gone against him. Hopefully Sam can pick up the debris left from the Euros."

(Editing by Pritha Sarkar)

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