Ange suggests he's happy to "sit down with" Celtic man who failed to live up to fee
Ange Postecoglou has intimated that there could be an exit strategy for Celtic goalkeeper Vasilis Barkas.
The Greek goalie joined Celtic last season for £4.5m [Scottish Sun]. Although statistically he wasn’t too bad, his high-profile errors and inability to make basic saves cost him the faith of the Celtic support. And of Neil Lennon, who dropped Barkas for Scott Bain and, for a brief time, Conor Hazard.
With the January transfer window mere weeks away, Barkas has not played for Celtic since another calamity showing against FC Midtjylland. In that game, he failed to deal with a corner, and it cost the Bhoys a crucial goal. After that, Scott Bain was picked again before Joe Hart entered the scene.
Via The Cynic, Ange Postecoglou said of Barkas:
“In terms of players out I’ve been fairly consistent on it, if players feel like their futures are better served away we’ll sit down with them.”
A move from Celtic has seemingly been on the cards for month for poor Vasilis Barkas. Two weeks ago, The Athletic reported that a January move was likely. It makes sense, given the former AEK man has made just one appearance for Celtic this season [Transfermarkt].
Unfortunately for the former Greece international, he wasn’t able to bounce back from his bad start. Although Postecoglou gave him chances, and he even looked decent in pre-season, it’s just not worked out.
Vasilis Barkas and Celtic to surely part ways
Was Barkas a symptom of last season’s malaise? In a campaign where new signings had to self-isolate and keep strict Covid protocols, it was hardly the best time to move country. Some embraced it, others struggled. Shane Duffy was another who failed to settle in at Celtic.
Given the myriad problems the club had last season, Barkas will likely be remembered as a chapter in a book no Celtic fan will want to read. That’s a real shame, because he wasn’t signed for no reason.
Capped 13 times for Greece, Barkas kept a considerable 61 clean sheets in 111 outings for AEK Athens. Young at 26 in goalkeeping terms, the 20-21 season looked like a great opportunity for him.
Sadly, it just didn’t turn out that way for him or for Celtic. Ange Postecoglou turned to former England goalkeeper Joe Hart, himself low on confidence, and rejuvenated his career.
I genuinely hope Barkas does get to move somewhere else and can flourish. There’s a solid goalkeeper in there somewhere. That he wasn’t able to show that on such a grand stage is a real shame.
Postecoglou seems to be saying that Barkas is keen on departing Glasgow. If that’s the case, it’s hard to imagine the boss standing in his way.