Celtic goalkeeper Fraser Forster has been touching on his penalty save in Copenhagen whilst shutting down talk of his long-term future.
Forster was the hero for Celtic in Denmark last week. With Stale Solbakken’s side winning a penalty thanks to VAR, it looked as though Celtic were heading for an aggregate deficit heading into our Europa League last-32 second-leg this Thursday. Thankfully, Forster tipped Jens Stage’s effort onto the post before it was cleared.
It’s not the first time he’s made a big stop in Europe this season either. The likes of M’Baye Niang, Billel Omrani, and Felipe Caicedo have found it difficult to get the ball beyond Forster. He’s come up trumps in every European match this season, and is proving a sensational summer-signing after arriving on loan from Southampton.
However, Forster doesn’t appear keen to look to the long-term just yet. He spoke in the Celtic View this week about that penalty stop, VAR, and his Celtic future, but he doesn’t want to look any further than the present (Volume 55, Issue 31, Pages 22-24).
“It’s one of those where I picked a way to go and managed to get a hand to it. I felt it was a bit of a harsh penalty but that’s what it can be like with VAR. If it hits your arm at all it’s probably going to be given. VAR scrutinises the game so you just can’t put a foot wrong at any moment in the game which can be very difficult.
“It was nice to make the save and contribute to a good away performance. You go through runs with penalty saves when you seem to save a few and then it goes the other way for a few. Luckily, the save counted for something and helped us to a draw.
“For me, I want to win every game between now and the end of the season. That’s my first priority and what I think about in terms of what the future holds. I want to contribute and do my bit for the team.”
Only so much Fraser can know
Regardless of whether Forster wants to come to Parkhead permanently or not, there’s only so much he can know. Hammering onto him about his long-term future won’t do any good. At the end of the day, he’s Southampton’s player.
The fact is that Forster likely won’t know what Southampton’s plans are for next season. Alex McCarthy and Angus Gun may be their number one and two goalkeepers at the moment, but look at what Forster is achieving.
It would be almost crazy to think that Saints aren’t taking notice of his European exploits. His form could make it all the more difficult to sign him up permanently. So it’s not as if Forster can say either way whether he’ll sign on at Parkhead or not. With a contract running until the summer of 2022, nothing can be confirmed just yet (Transfermarkt).
At the very least, he’s played his part massively this season. He’s already played 35 games and has only conceded 23 goals in those matches. 15 of his games for Celtic have ended in clean sheets, whilst a further 18 of them have only seen the opposition score once (Transfermarkt).
That kind of form won’t be going unnoticed. Fraser will be in the sticks against Copenhagen tomorrow night once again, and you wouldn’t bet against him making another couple of big stops if the situation demands it.