Michael Hart (footballer)
|Date of birth||10 February 1980|
|Place of birth||Bellshill, Scotland|
|Height||5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
|Playing position||Right back|
|2000||→ Livingston (loan)||3||(0)|
|2000–2001||→ Livingston (loan)||22||(0)|
|2008–2010||Preston North End||19||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 19:54, 20 February 2013 (UTC).
Michael Hart (born 10 February 1980, in Bellshill) is a Scottish footballer, who currently plays for Huntly. Hart plays as a right back, and previously played for Aberdeen, Livingston, Preston North End, Hibernian, St Johnstone and Airdrie United.
Hart came through the ranks at Aberdeen and made his debut in a 1–1 draw with Dunfermline Athletic in 1998. He made a total of 19 first team appearances before moving on to Livingston on loan in 2000. His move to Livingston was made permanent in July 2001 and he helped them to a third-place finish in their first season in the SPL, which gave them qualification for the 2002–03 UEFA Cup.
Hart returned to Aberdeen in February 2003 and, after a shaky start, established himself as a fleet-footed, quick tackling right back. He missed most of the 2005–06 season due to a knee injury, featuring in only four matches. He came back into the team for the 2006–07 season and featured in almost every game, helping the club to a third-place finish in the league. In July 2007, Hart was involved in a car crash whilst on tour with Aberdeen in Egypt, along with team-mate Jamie Smith. Neither player was seriously hurt.
In January 2008, Hart signed a pre-contract agreement with Preston North End and was expected to move to Deepdale at the end of the season. However, on 31 January, Preston had an offer thought to be £100,000 accepted for the right-back. Hart then suffered from a succession of injuries, making only 25 appearances for Preston in over two years with the club. Preston manager Darren Ferguson listed Hart for transfer in May 2010.
Hart returned to Scotland in July 2010, with Hibernian, after his contract with Preston was cancelled. Hart's preferred position of right back had been a significant problem for Hibs during the previous season. He had been a target for Hibs manager John Hughes, who had been unable to sign him previously for "different reasons". Shortly after signing, Hart scored his first goal for 12 years and his first ever in club football, in a friendly against ADO Den Haag.
Hart suffered a serious groin injury in a friendly match against Sunderland in August 2011. He made a handful of appearances for Hibs in the 2011–12 season, before he was released from his contract by mutual consent on 31 January 2012.
Hart then signed for St Johnstone on a short term contract until the end of the 2011–12 season. He joined Airdrie United in July 2012, but left in November the same year to pursue a full-time career outwith football.
- "Livingston make 17 signings". BBC Sport. BBC. 4 July 2001.
- "Bank books stay closed". BBC Sport. BBC. 1 February 2003.
- "Dons' Hart completes Preston move". BBC Sport. 31 January 2008. Retrieved 31 January 2008.
- "I didn't need to be sold on move to Hibs, says new boy Michael Hart". Daily Record. 8 July 2010. Retrieved 8 July 2010.
- "Hibernian sign Michael Hart from Preston". BBC Sport. BBC. 8 July 2010. Retrieved 8 July 2010.
- "Hart Targeting More Goals". Hibernian F.C. 22 July 2010. Retrieved 28 July 2010.
- "Squad Injury Update". Hibernian F.C. 6 August 2011. Retrieved 6 August 2011.
- Hardie, David (20 August 2011). "Injury leaves Hibs' Hart to mull quitting". Edinburgh Evening News. Johnston Press. Retrieved 20 August 2011.
- "Akpo Sodje and Michael Hart leave Hibernian". BBC Sport. BBC. 31 January 2012. Retrieved 27 July 2012.
- "St Johnstone sign Michael Hart as Carl Finnigan joins Dundee". BBC Sport. BBC. 21 February 2012. Retrieved 27 July 2012.
- "SIGNING NEWS". airdriefc.com. Airdrie United FC. 27 July 2012. Retrieved 27 July 2012.
- Paterson, Colin (26 July 2012). "Airdrie United plan to strengthen squad". Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 27 July 2012.