IT’S make-your-mind-up time for Celtic and AEK Athens in the champions’ reported pursuit of goalkeeper Vasilios Barkas.
The clubs have hit an impasse in the valuation of the Greek international No.1 as Neil Lennon attempts to strengthen his last line of defence after apparently missing out on Fraser Forster.
The champions originally offered £3.5million for the 26-year-old shotstopper in a proposed move CQN reported at the beginning of the month.
The Hoops made a second bid for Barkas which would have taken the transfer fee to £4.5million with add-ons. However, AEK are insisting on £6.5million and, unless there is a bit of leeway in the stalemate, any deal will almost certainly collapse.
It is understood Barkas, who was born in Holland, has been told of the personal terms on offer at the champions and is happy with them, according to a report in the Daily Record.
With the Premiership due to kick off a week tomorrow with the visit of Hamilton Accies to the east end of Glasgow, Lennon has been working strenuously in a complicated market place to bring in reinforcements for the historic 10-in-a-row bid.
Scott Bain remains his only keeper with competitive first-team experience after Craig Gordon left at the end of his contract to sign a two-year deal with former club Hearts.
Ex-Hoops netminder David Marshall, currently at cash-hit Wigan, and former England international Joe Hart, released by Burnley, have also been linked with the Parkhead outfit.