CELTIC’S £4.5million misfit keeper Vasilis Barkas has finally found a new club after his Hoops contract was scrapped with 12 months still to run.
The former Greek international No.1 leaves the champions after featuring in only 24 games after Neil Lennon made him the most expensive netminder in the club’s history when he bought him from AEK Athens in the summer of 2020.
That means blundering Barkas cost the Parkhead side a whopping £187,500 for every appearance.
HAPPIER TIMES…Vasilis Barkas poses with the No.1 shirt in the Celtic trophyroom after sealing his £4.5million move in the summer of 2020.
The overpriced last line of defence was ditched on several occasions during his debut campaign with Conor Hazard, hero of the quadruple treble success, and Scott Bain being brought in to attempt to rectify the flow of conceded goals during a wretched season in which the team limped home without a trophy for the first time in 11 years.
It wasn’t all Barkas’ fault, of course, and there were others around Parkhead at the time who need to have a good look at their input in a term where the team were bidding for a historic tenth successive title.
Lennon paid the ultimate price as he lost the job he loved and was replaced in June 2021 by Ange Postecoglou who took one look at Barkas and dumped him from the first team.
The shotstopper’s only other appearance under the Greek-Australian gaffer was a 3-1 league win over St Johnstone in Perth on Boxing Day when neither Joe Hart nor Bain were fit to play.
HELLO – AND GOODBYE…Vasilis Barkas blunders to allow FC Midtjylland to equalise in the Champions League qualifier in July 2021 – his second last appearance for Celtic.
Twenty-nine-year-old Barkas spent last season on loan at Utrecht and he has just penned a one-year deal with the Eredivisie outfit.
The Dutch team’s technical director Jordy Zuidam, speaking on the club website, said: “We are extremely happy with the fact that we have connected Vasilis to us.
“During the past season, Vasilis has proven to add value to the team and he has proven to be one of the better goalkeepers in the Eredivisie over the past season.
“It seemed impossible to keep Vasilis, but the fact that we still succeeded makes us proud and indicates that Vasilis really wants to continue playing for our club and supporters.”
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