Manchester City Boss Manuel Pellegrini has stated that goalkeeper Joe Hart agreed with the Chilean's decision to drop him after a series of poor performances.
Costel Pantilimon replaced the England international for nine of 11 matches, starting with the Blues 2-0 victory over Newcastle United in the League Cup on 30 October.
Pellegrini recalled England's number one for the quarter-final encounter at Leicester in the same competition, and he has retained his place since.
However Pellegrini stated that Hart himself knew that he needed a rest, after a few unconvincing performances.
"I did what I thought was best for the team and Joe Hart," he said.
"At that moment, Joe needed the rest. Maybe he would not say it, but he agreed with me. He realised it."
Pellegrini has also praised Hart for his solid performances since returning to the first team.
"Maybe some other players would have reacted in a bad way but he always reacted in a very good way," added Pellegrini.
"That is why he has returned for us in very good form.
"He is the best goalkeeper in England, a goalkeeper for a big team and he makes important saves.
"That is normal for him and why he is the number one in England."