Former Celtic man Fraser Forster status explained by Hasenhuttl

By David Walton

January 24, 2021

Former Celtic goalkeeper Fraser Forster has had his position at Southampton clarified by manager Ralph Hasenhuttl.

Forster was a big summer target for the Hoops after playing out a superb campaign in Glasgow last season. However, in the end, Fraser decided to stay in England and fight for his place [BBC].

That initially looked to be a move he would regret after sitting on the bench for the first half of the campaign. But in recent weeks he’s bagged clean sheets against Liverpool and Shrewsbury respectively. Yesterday, he made it three-in-a-row when he managed a shutout against Arsenal in the FA Cup fourth round.

That’s led to Hasenhuttl claiming that Forster now deserves to be labeled Saints’ “cup goalkeeper” in a big status update.

As quoted by Hampshire Live, the Southampton boss said: “Forster deserves now to be our cup goalkeeper now, I think. He has helped us through to the next round and he has another clean sheet too – he is doing a fantastic job.

“We have two really good goalkeepers so there is no reason why I shouldn’t trust him again.

“The goalkeepers are getting better and better. They’re coming along really strongly and the praise goes to my goalkeeper coach and the good work that he does.”

Celtic will have moved on, but Forster shouldn’t be too enthralled with Hasenhuttl remark

Cup goalkeeper. The back-handed compliment that only the most desperate shot-stopper should be satisfied with. You can throw Forster into that category when it comes to Southampton though.

He’s been starved of minutes all season. He’ll view the FA Cup as an absolutely glorious opportunity to either push his claim at St Mary’s or put himself in the shop window. Either way, he’ll be delighted to be getting in front of the TV cameras as a number one again.

But it’s not as if he’ll be seeing much in the way of Premier League action anytime soon. Southampton again host Arsenal on Tuesday night, and Hampshire Live has reported that regular number one Alex McCarthy will be back in the sticks.

Fraser Forster makes a save for Southampton against Arsenal (Photo by Ben STANSALL / AFP)

Yet he’ll still look at this as some sort of promotion. Being the cup goalkeeper will at the very least give him another game this season. But there doesn’t appear to be any guarantees outside of that.

As for a move to Celtic, that ship has clearly sailed. Forster was happy to stay down south when there were no guarantees of any minutes going around. Given he’s been given this new tag by Hasenhuttl, he’ll probably be absolutely delighted.

But from our perspective, his career needed that move back to Glasgow this season. It would’ve been interesting to see how different things would’ve been had Fraser come back.

In other news, we discuss how the current Celtic side has a duty to protect the legacy of the Invincibles.