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No Joe Hart, No Fraser Forster – Enter Vasilis Barkas

30 July 2020


For the past few months the tabloid media and the websites that feed off them and a Chris Sutton tweet or an article in the Daily Record or the Sun have been linking Celtic to resigning Fraser Forster or rejuvenating Joe Harts career. So today they finally got to announce that Celtic had signed Greek Goalkeeper, Vasilis Barkas from AEK Athens.

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All those newspaper columns and website space filled with Google adverts need text to get the punters in and the goalkeeping position at Celtic Park helped fill the void with no real activity to write about since Craig Gordon signed for Hearts.

Now they must have a quick glance at Wikipedia to fill some more column space or re-write the brief news of the signing put out on Celtic’s official website and Celtic TV. It will be interesting to see how much mileage they can get out of those few lines.

John Harston speaking before Celtic played Ross County last week in a pre-season friendly mentioned that Celtic were looking for a goalkeeper that had international experience and had played in the Champions League, well Vasilis ticked both of the boxes. He played against Celtic back in 2018 when they the Greeks knocked us out of the competition.

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Let’s hope that he can help us qualify for this year’s competition, it will also be interesting to see if he comes straight into the first team. I interviewed former Celtic player, Ramon Vega on Tuesday for the Celtic Soul Podcast and he told us he signed on a Friday, did not train with the team, met his new team mates the night before at the team hotel and made his debut on the Sunday and scored two goals. So it’s possible he will start, another headline for the lazy press!

Vasilis will have an extra day to settle in and if he does not get the nod to come straight into the team, Scott Bain will be more than ready for Sundays game v Hamilton and will be capable of pushing him to keep him on his toes if he wants to make the number one jersey his own.

Now with a goalkeeper signed cue the music, cue the humours and cue the bull that will be written over the transfer window with who is coming to Celtic Park to strengthen our defence or give Neil Lennon more attacking options.

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I would go down the pub now to get the latest from a “source “close to the player said…. But the pubs over here are shut.

Paul the Tim has been installed by the bookies at Even Money to be the first Celtic fan pictured with the new bhoy and the bookies have said they will pay out on a social distance photo. Face mask on and into the bookies I’ll be having a few quid on that one.

Joking aside very happy we have an experienced goalkeeper signed and looking forward to seeing him make his debut, roll on Sunday.

Andrew Milne started More than 90 Minutes in 2001. He has written for numerous publications and online about Celtic.  He is a former newspaper columnist with the Daily Ireland and the man behind celticfanzine.com. He is host of the Celtic Soul Podcast & Celtic AM pre-match events at Malone’s in Glasgow on match days and follows Celtic Home & Away. He is a season ticket holder for Celtic FC and the Republic of Ireland. He is also P.R.O. of St. Margaret’s CSC, a member of the Celtic Trust and the Celtic Graves Association. 

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