“I know what I can do and I don’t have to prove myself,” Vasilis Barkas

Vasilis Barkas left Parkhead last summer after failing to win over Celtic boss, Ange Postecoglou. The Greek netminder was an expensive signing for the Hoops, when they formed out £4.5 million to AEK Athens for his signature in the summer transfer window of 2020. It was a move that promised so much but in the end, just failed to deliver spectacularly.

Having been deemed surplus to requirements at Lennoxtown by Ange, he was made available for loan or sale and he duly found interest in his services from Holland. Eredivisie side, FC Utrecht were the first to take the plunge and try and resurrect a career that had looked virtually dead at that point. Lacking in confidence and belief, Celtic had proved just too heavy a burden for the 28-year-old goalkeeper.

FC Utrecht goalkeeper Vasilis Barkas, AZ Alkmaar during the round of 16 of the TOTO KNVB Cup between AZ Alkmaar and FC Utrecht at AFAS stadium on February 7, 2023 in Alkmaar, Netherlands. Photo VI ANP Sport.jpg

The man who couldn’t catch his breath at Parkhead has been on great form with his new employer – even if it is just temporary – and the Greek international has stated for the record that he doesn’t feel he needs to prove himself to anyone who doubts his ability, such is his time in the Netherlands been so successful to date.

After making a string of important saves and garnering the affection of the club, his teammates, and their supporters, it seems Barkas has found some confidence which has clearly got him back on track for a potential summer move away somewhere. Speaking to Voetbal International, the ‘keeper said: “My behaviour was very normal. I know what I can do and I don’t have to prove myself. Only at the weekend (during games), not on the training field. Everything revolves around your mind. That’s how I used to be.”

ALKMAAR , 07-02-2023 , AFAS Stadion , Dutch football , TOTO KNVB Beker , season 2022 / 2023 , AZ vs FC Utrecht , FC Utrecht goalkeeper Vasilis Barkas AZ – Utrecht cup

After a consistent level of performance this season at the Dutch outfit, even Vasilis’ teammates are reckoning that their temporary man between the sticks is too good for his current club. His teammate, Tasos Douvikas, insisted that the big man has been a revelation on that front and revealed that his agent committed one blunder this year.

He said: “Vasilis knows what he is doing. He has saved us several times this season. I can’t remember one blunder. Not one! He’s incredibly consistent. We feel safe with him on target. Maybe he is too good for FC Utrecht.”

HEERENVEEN, 29-10-2022, Abe Lenstra Stadium, football, Dutch Eredivisie SC Heerenveen – FC Utrecht, FC Utrecht goalkeeper Vasilis Barkas celebrating the 1-2 win Heerenveen – Utrecht

Celtic will no doubt be happy with their former stopper’s displays over in a decent European Legaue. This could pave the way for another club with better finances that Utrecht to make a move for the man who couldn’t do right for doing wrong in a Hoops shirt. With his game being raised again, we could be looking at recouping a decent chunk of his initial transfer fee when he joined the club.

Paul Gillespie

Matthew Marr’s debut Celtic book – The Bould Bhoys! Glory to their name – is out on 24 March on Celtic Star Books

Pushing the launch of Matthew Marr’s debut Celtic book – ‘The BOULD BHOYS – Glory to their name’ back a week to Friday 24 March. Thanks to everyone who has ordered since we announced the book last night via an interview with the author. Please note that all pre-ordered books will be personally signed by Matthew Marr and you can order below if you’d like a signed copy posted out to you 24 March.

READ THIS...‘The Bould Bhoys – Glory to their name’ by Matthew Marr

About Author

I'm a Garngad Bhoy through and through. My first ever Celtic game was a friendly against Italian side Parma at Celtic Park, in 2002. Currently a student of English Literature and Education at the University of Strathclyde for my sins. Favourite game would be a toss up between beating Manchester United with that Naka freekick, or the game against the Oldco when Hesselink scored in the dying seconds. I'm still convinced Cal Mac is wasted playing that far back.

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