Hart out for Community Shield curtain-raiser

Hart out for Community Shield curtain-raiser

Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart misses this afternoon’s Community Shield encounter with FA Cup winners Chelsea at Villa Park.

It has been reported that Hart has picked up a minor back injury, which will also rule him out of England’s midweek friendly with Italy in Switzerland.

Romanian international Costel Pantilimon takes Hart’s place this afternoon in a City side that shows four changes from the team that started that amazing final-day win over QPR in May, which ended the Blues’ 44-year wait for the league championship.

David Silva was amongst those left out, as both he and Mario Balotelli started pre-season training less than two weeks ago.

As news of Jack Rodwell’s intended arrival at the Etihad Stadium spread, Chelsea are able to include one-time City target Eden Hazard for his debut.

Hazard snubbed a big-money offer from the Blues before agreeing a £32m switch from Lille to Chelsea earlier this summer.

Following the departure of Didier Drogba, Fernando Torres starts in attack for last season’s Champions League winners, who include John Terry and Ashley Cole - who will both be absent from England duty next week – and Frank Lampard, Roy Hodgson’s intended skipper against Italy in Berne.

Chelsea: Cech, Ivanovic, Luiz, Terry, Cole, Lampard, Mikel, Ramires, Eden Hazard, Mata, Torres.

Subs: Turnbull, Essien, Meireles, Sturridge, Cahill, Bertrand, Piazon.

Man City: Pantilimon, Savic, Kompany, Kolarov, Zabaleta, Milner, Toure Yaya, De Jong, Nasri, Tevez, Aguero.

Subs: Holmen Johansen, Dzeko, Adam Johnson, Silva, Clichy, Toure, Razak.

Referee: Kevin Friend.

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