Michael Stewart believes Vasilis Barkas won't come back from Celtic horror moment

By David Walton

July 20, 2021

Michael Stewart believes that Vasilis Barkas won’t recover from tonight’s latest Celtic blunder against Midtjylland.

The Hoops were 1-0 ahead against the Danes and cruising in the second 45. However, Barkas failed to look convincing as a free-kick from Evander somehow looped beyond him.

It looked as though he pulled his arms away instead of extending them in a moment that will have many Celtic fans wondering what on earth just happened.

And after a poor debut year in Scotland last season, Stewart believes the Greek’s time at the club is up.

Speaking on Premier Sports 1 [20/07, 21:55], Stewart said: “Going back to the goalkeeping situation, not to harp on about it but it is so important. Chris [Sutton] has talked at length about Fraser Forster and how important he was.

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“Barkas came in as a long-term replacement. It’s not worked. He’s starting the second season here, and these games are hugely important. And not only did he have a quiet game that went unnoticed, there’s a moment there that makes it even more difficult for him to come back from.

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“Whether he does come back, I don’t know. The odds are for me, he won’t.”

Michael Stewart makes a good point; it’s becoming more and more difficult to defend Vasilis Barkas

I’ve been one of Barkas’ biggest defenders. Many will be of the same thought process as me. That he had just come from a different culture and footballing environment in Greece. That moving to Scotland was a massive difference to what he was used to.

However, we’re now well past that stage of integration. Barkas has been here for 12 months. Everyone under-performed under the previous manager, but we have a new boss in charge now and things need to change.

We were all willing to give Barkas a fresh start. A new season had come around and he’d had a positive pre-season campaign. Not to mention he was impressive only days ago against Preston North End on Saturday.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

But this was the big one. He had one save to make and made a massive blunder of it. Failing to catch Evander’s strike means he’s now had more than enough chances and consistently let the club down.

Ange Postecoglou’s shopping list for the summer may have just grown once again. A new goalkeeper could be deemed essential for those who felt this was Barkas’ last chance. We certainly don’t have a capable replacement in Scott Bain or Conor Hazard.

Celtic will have to go with Barkas again in Denmark next week of course. We have no alternative. All we can do is sit and hope he can somehow redeem himself.

In other news: Chris Sutton has been left absolutely baffled by Nir Bitton’s Celtic flashpoint