VASILIS BARKAS, the most expensive goalkeeper in Celtic’s history, was nowhere to be seen during the champions’ latest form collapse.
Scott Bain played in the dismal 1-0 flop against Ross County in Dingwall on Sunday night while rookie Conor Hazard was on the substitutes’ bench.
In the midst of another overwhelmingly disappointing display that saw Neil Lennon’s side lose their fourth Premiership game of a wretched campaign, the non-appearance of Barkas in the squad hardly provoked a comment.
The 26-year-old keeper, signed for £4.5million from AEK Athens in the summer when it was obvious Fraser Forster would not be coming back for a second successive loan move from Southampton, has failed to convince. CQN did a special report on the Greek international last month to highlight his less-than-impressive performances.
Incredibly, the last line of defence has conceded 21 goals from only 49 attempts on goal which means nearly even second effort on target results in a goal. It’s a damning statistic.
FALL GUY…Vasilis Barkas feels that sinking feeling.
Now Barkas could be heading for an early Hoops exit, according to journalistic reports in his homeland.
Celtic cannot hope to recoup anything like the financial outlay to bring the shotstopper to Glasgow, but it is clear he will not see out the remaining three years of a lucrative contract at the faltering champions.
Lennon axed Barkas from the starting line-up for the delayed Scottish Cup Final against Hearts on December 20 at Hampden.
With the phenomenal achievement of the quadruple treble on the line, the boss opted for Northern Ireland netminder Hazard for only his third first-team appearance and was rewarded when the youngster saved two penalty-kicks in the dramatic shoot-out triumph after the 3-3 extra-time stalemate.
Barkas was in goal for the January 2 outing at Ibrox and was beaten by an unfortunate deflection from Callum McGregor for the only goal of the match.
He played in the 2-2 draw against Livingston in West Lothian on January 16 and then was dropped to make way for Bain.
It looks as though there is no way back for Barkas with a summer farewell on the cards.