One of the high-profile departures from the club this summer has been the loaning of former AEK Athens and Greece goalkeeper Vasilis Barkas from the ranks at Parkhead. The much discredited netminder was on the receiving end of severe flak after he failed to live up to the price-tag of his £5 million acquisition back in the summer of 2020.
Replacing Fraser Forster was always going to be an ask for the ‘keeper and he never seemed quite settled at the Hoops. After he walked into one disaster after another in a Celtic shirt, Ange Postecoglou finally decided to cut him loose and he subsequently joined the Eredivisie side in a couple of months ago.
Barkas revealed that during his first few training sessions in Holland that he felt more at home and secure in his surroundings. He detailed a lack of love and support system as the reasoning for his failings back in Scotland and was now hoping to push on and regain the confidence and swagger that convinced Peter Lawwell and co. to fork out such a hefty fee for his services.
Looking more happy in his environment, it is beginning to translate onto the pitch with his performances. The latest display from the Greek saw his club put the Celtic loanees saves from their last game up on a reel. By all accounts, it does look like the Greek has hands after all! Such a pity he couldn’t shown them more often when he was at Celtic Park.
Sometimes, the weight of expectation combined with a slow start can really hamper new playing staff to the point where they just can’t seem to recover and regain momentum of any sort. There is undeniably talent in Barkas as he would not have been capped internationally otherwise. It’s just the wrong move at the wrong time which happens in football.
Plus, it’s good to see he is settled and getting back his form as Celtic could recoup some of the initial outlay which was considerable.
Watch Barkas in action:
Some clips from Vasilis Barkas’ first clean sheet for Utrecht vs Cambuur – 13/08/22 🧤 pic.twitter.com/qOrsQZMTDm
— Celtic Youth and Loan Highlights 🎥 (@celtic_ylvids) August 15, 2022
Some of the replies:
Obviously the guy just couldn’t handle the pressure of playing for a club of Celtic’s stature.
— Anthony Sheridan Neil ll (@AnthonyNumamoid) August 15, 2022
second one he could've done a bit better with but overall some good saves. hope he has a good season, deserves to get his career back on track.
— j (@kundaibenyu_) August 15, 2022
Need to go to the opticians after watching that
— shaun (@shaun57667428) August 15, 2022
Wow he has got hands 🙌
— Glasgow Celtic Man (@cborp1) August 15, 2022
That’s not Barkas.
— John Molloy (@jbhoymolloy) August 15, 2022