Celtic goalkeeper Vasilis Barkas could come in from the cold tomorrow against St Johnstone after an injury to Scott Bain.
Barkas hasn’t been seen in a Celtic shirt since a 2-2 draw at Livingston back in January. The Greek shot-stopper has had a hugely disappointing season, making only 20 appearances this term [Transfermarkt].
Since then, he’s played second fiddle to Scott Bain who himself has failed to impress. Bain has conceded 30 goals in only 23 games this season, but has continued to hold onto the jersey regardless [Transfermarkt].
However, it looks as though a change is in the offing tomorrow night. Bain has picked up a finger injury, and interim boss John Kennedy has confirmed that Celtic will take absolutely zero risks with it:
💬 JK: "Scott Bain picked up a finger injury in the previous game against Rangers. We’re not taking any risks with that. There’s one or two others, again, who we won’t risk. But nothing major, we’re pretty much working with the same squad give or take one or two."#CELSTJ 🍀
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) May 11, 2021
Vasilis Barkas must make the most of brief Celtic opportunity
Yes, these games are next to meaningless for us. We’re fighting for nothing but six points that will do nothing for our season. All we can do from here on in is salvage at least a modicum of pride, and there’s not even much of that up for grabs either.
However, this is a bigger opportunity for Barkas than some may think. It works like this, if he keeps a clean sheet against St Johnstone tomorrow night, he should be in on Saturday against Hibs at Easter Road. Another shutout there, and he can potentially start feeling a bit better about himself ahead of next season.
Conor Hazard is another alternative for Kennedy, and it will be interesting to see who does indeed come in as number one. But given the fact Barkas has been the man regularly on the bench behind Bain, he looks best placed to be given his shot.
What Celtic fans want to see from the former AEK Athens man is a save or two. He simply hasn’t made enough of them, yet you still feel there’s something there and that we simply haven’t seen the best of Barkas yet.
With a pressure-free two games coming up, it would be pleasing to see him end the campaign on a high. It could do wonders for how he kicks on in pre-season under the new boss.
Hopefully Bain makes a swift recovery from his finger injury, but Barkas must see this for the big opportunity it is.