Following the loss the AC Milan in the Europa League last night, former Manchester United and Hibernian midfielder Michael Stewart, who now works as a pundit for BBC Sport, does not think that Barkas makes big saves like Fraser Forster and Craig Gordon did for the Bhoys.
What Stewart said about Celtic goalkeeper Vasilios Barkas
He said, via BBC Sport, “Barkas has not stood out for me. Compare him to Fraser Forster or even Craig Gordon, he hasn’t shown he can make the big saves they can yet.”
Is this criticism of Vasilios Barkas fair?
The 26-year-old arrived in the summer and had a lot of pressure on his shoulders as the replacement for Fraser Forster, who performed brilliantly last season when he returned to Parkhead on loan from Southampton. He played 28 games, keeping 14 clean sheets whilst only conceding 17 goals (via Transfermarkt) and his performances had many fans of the club begging for him to stay.
So far, Barkas has played 14 times in all competitions and conceded 11 goals, whilst keeping eight clean sheets, (Transfermarkt). This is a decent return but he has now been criticised in the Milan game by Stewart and also in the Old Firm derby by former Scotland international Alan Hutton.
These poor performances are not what the Hoops need in big games. Forster, on the other hand, shone for the Hoops on the big occasion, such as his stunning save from Lazio’s Danilo Cataldi last year. This highlights that the criticism of Barkas is somewhat justified, but perhaps the Greek international will get better with experience as he adapts to the club.
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