Neil Lennon is looking to bring in an experienced goalkeeper in time to play at Ibrox on 2 January but it looks like it will NOT be Fraser Forster. The Englishman changed his mind about returning to Celtic in the summer after a very successful loan deal last season but hasn’t played any football at Southampton this season – despite being one of the Saints’ top earners.
Instead the Celtic manager, according to the Daily Mail’s Stephen McGowan, is set to pursue the earlier interest we’ve previously reported on, in the Dundee United keeper Benjamin Siegrist with Lennon aiming to have him signed and ready to play at Ibrox on 2 January.
And McGowan reports that Celtic have a list of potential goalkeepers with the Dundee Utd man clearly featuring. Having signed Vasilis Barkas from AEK Athens for £5million in the summer, the Celtic manager would have hoped that this investment would solve the problem left by Forster’s U-Turn.
That clearly has not been the case with both Barkas and last season’s third pick keeper Scott Bain both failing to establish themselves in what has been a disappointing season For Celtic so far – only highlight being the remarkable achievement on Sunday of winning last season’s delayed Scottish Cup Final to complete a world record quadruple treble.
Indeed such was the frustration with Bain and Barkas that young reserve keeper Conor Hazard played in that Final at Hampden on Sunday and ended up the hero after saving the final two Hearts penalties to turn around a penalty shoot out that Celtic were trailing in after Ryan Christie’s effort was saved by the former Celtic keeper Craig Gordon – who had been allowed to leave the club in the summer, on the expectation that Forster was returning.
Hazard will keep his place in the side this evening when Celtic will be looking for revenge against Ross County at Celtic Park after the Highlanders ended the consecutive cup wins record at Celtic Park a few weeks ago with a shock 2-0 win that heaped pressure on Neil Lennon with calls for his dismissal from the supporters amid protests outside the stadium.
Hazard is not likely to play at Ibrox but if all goes to plan neither will Barkas or Bain, with a new signing likely to be the Celtic keeper in this must win Glasgow Derby.