Celtic still assessing options for problem position, Sky Sports say
Sky Sports reporter Anthony Joseph has reported of a fresh Celtic January priority as he tweeted that the Hoops are still in the market for a new goalkeeper.
Neil Lennon has been let down badly by both Vasilis Barkas and Scott Bain this season. Barkas, signed for £4.5million from AEK Athens in the summer (Scottish Sun), has failed to nail down his place as Celtic’s first-choice goalkeeper. Bain, meanwhile, has let in far too many goals as his deputy.
That’s left Celtic relying on young Conor Hazard to keep them ticking over. He impressed against both Lille and Kilmarnock, and looks to have done enough to keep his place for this weekend’s Scottish Cup final vs Hearts.
But it doesn’t appear as though Celtic are through looking at goalkeeping options. With January only a couple of weeks away, Sky’s Joseph has tweeted that we’re still in the market for another.
Celtic are close to agreeing a new contract with goalkeeper Conor Hazard.@SkySportsNews understands the club want to tie him up on a long-term deal with a significant wage increase.
The Hoops will still assess goalkeeping options in next month's transfer window.
— Anthony Joseph (@AnthonyRJoseph) December 15, 2020
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Hazard for now is the number one and that will be the case for a while. Barkas and Bain have had their chances. Realistically, it’s time to admit that both aren’t good enough.
However, if Hazard manages to cement his place, we still have a problem. Should anything happen to him, we’re still having to throw in one of the underperformers. Our goalkeeping options still aren’t strong enough.
It’s interesting to see that Celtic are assessing our current situation in that position. This opens up a key question as to what that means. Do we want a new number one? Are we looking for back-up alternatives? Perhaps we’re looking to cut our losses with Barkas for example?
Only Celtic can answer that one, but a new goalkeeper would still be welcome. So long of course as it doesn’t strip away from Hazard’s opportunities. He’s there on merit. The last thing he needs is to be tossed to the side despite him doing nothing wrong.
There may come a time when Hazard needs to drop out for a spell. Perhaps he’ll have some poor form somewhere down the line. The problem there is you’re then turning to players who have been poor all season. Barkas and Bain are tried and tested. Both aren’t of a standard acceptable enough.
So let’s see where Celtic go from here in January. The big question now is whether Celtic go for a blockbuster signing or a back-up one.