Celtic boss Neil Lennon won’t compare the merits of his new goalkeeper with the man who helped the Hoops win two trophies last season.
Vasilis Barkas joined Celtic from AEK Athens this week, and is set to take the place of Fraser Forster, who was excellent for the Hoops both domestically and in Europe.
Lennon knows how important a player Forster was for Celtic. However, he has talked up Barkas’ attributes and, more importantly, refused to compared the goalkeepers with each other.
“He is a good size, really composed and a good shot stopper. He is really good coming for crosses, which is important” Lennon said, as quoted by the Daily Record, about Barkas.
“We are not going to compare him”
“We are not going to compare him with Fraser – Fraser has been and gone and made a huge contribution – but we’re hoping Barkas will come in and do similar” the Hoops boss concluded.
Lennon’s comments are very sensible. There is no point in putting Barkas under pressure early on in his Hoops career by comparing him to a player like Forster.
Forster was a brilliant goalkeeper for the Hoops. If Barkas is half as good then Celtic will have made a very decent signing.
Good to see manager talk up attributes
It is also good to see Lennon talk up the attributes that Barkas will bring to the side. Hopefully he will be Celtic’s first-choice goalkeeper for many years to come.
It will be interesting to see if Barkas gets the nod to start against Hamilton on Sunday. Neil Lennon may well prefer to give Scott Bain the start. He has been involved in the Hoops’ pre-season matches.
However, it would be a sign of confidence in the new arrival if he was given the nod to start the first game of the season.
Barkas will be Celtic’s first-choice goalkeeper sooner rather than later. He will certainly have big shoes to fill. However, Neil Lennon has called it correctly by refusing to compare the player to Fraser Forster.