Contrary to popular belief, the main business of any transfer window recently has been done fairy quickly, a sign that targets have been identified and sounded out long before the window is opened.
With Fraser Forster deciding to reject another spell in Glasgow to spend more time with his bank balance, the pressure was on to find a replacement.
Forster was never our player, and although he had made noises -without a megaphone-about it being good to be back, a plan had to be in place in case he changed his mind.
Vasslis Barkas stepped off a plane at Glasgow airport and will undergo a medical at Ross Hall today and should all go well, he’ll provide competition for Scott Bain’s jersey.
We didn’t know a great deal about the player, but we have the benefit of a world wide web and we used that to see if Greece has the same problem with drunks as the rest of the world….and it did.
Adrianos Moleos , our man over there, told us….
Yes I know him well.
I would probably characterise him as the Greek van der sar. He reads the game, he is young, but he is still developing and requires a lot of work. But he is probably a very good deal.
Whether he will make it in Scotland I don’t know. He doesn’t have the international experience Samaras had
An honest, and somewhat frightening assessment.
Edwin van Der Saar was the man who shouted “oh Fuuucckkk ” at Old Trafford when a Shunsuke Nakamura free kick hit the net before he’d even seen it was coming, and then a few weeks later shouted ” Oh fuuucckkk not again ” when the Japanese magician put one in the far corner at Celtic Park from roughly a mile and a half out, prompting Alex Ferguson, the then Manchester united boss to point out to van der Saar that he will be in every video ever made about Nakamura.
Other than that though, van der Saar had a decent career, and if Barkas has anything near his ability we’ll have dropped on another quality keeper…
Or is it the case that we “drop on ” quality keepers ?
Or do we take good keepers and turn them into quality keepers ?
We’ll see soon enough, I suppose….
Two medicals were booked for today, but the forward from West Ham, Albjen Aleti wants more time to think about a move to Celtic, and so he has jetted off to Switzerland for a break. It’s also worth noting that he’s currently playing for a team from London, where the plague is sill in town, and he might not have fancied a medical.
Or it simply might be that after being out of the team at west Ham, he didnlt fancy fighting for a place against Edouard, Griffiths and Klimali.
Or even Ivan Toney, the Peterborough lad who has been the subject of a bid from a Scottish club, according to the Cambridgeshire outfit, and since the Posh want upwards of £5m for him, it doesn’t take Pinkertons to work out from where the bid came.
This might worry some of us that Oddsone Edoaurd could well be sold, especially if Celtic don’t make the champions League, but at least there is some kind of plan B in place if he is.
We’d all be delighted to get one more year put of the Frenchman, but maybe he wants to go home to be nearer his family during what promises to be a difficult winter as a rejuvenated virus can;t believe its luck with people forgetting its still around.
We also said earlier this season we’d keep an eye on the media narrative around the new campaign, before durng and after, and former Celt Andy Walker took a mouthful of lamb and announced that
Legendary status will be afforded to the players and manager if they can stop Celtic winning 10 titles in a row and the tone will be set for the rest of the season if they manage to secure all three points on the opening day.
Though in fairness he was doing it in the context of a match preview of their gane against aberdeen, but somehow forgot to mention that the Dons could put down a marker atraight away as the main rivals to Celtic..instead reminding us that
Aberdeen have been very prudent in this difficult time and have chosen to operate a one-in, one-out system for their squad.
Players and staff have had wage cuts imposed upon them and new signing Johnny Hayes has even offered to defer his entire salary for the season to give the club as much financial breathing space as possible.
Then Charlie Nicholas , a colleague of Walkers at Sky…can you spot the connection and reason for the narrative yet ?-narrative added his overvalued tuppence worth…
“I am a Celtic fan. I want another Treble, I am not camouflaging that but I do think Celtic will have a problem with no or limited crowds.
Just Celtic mind, everyone else will be fine.
“I think they will find it the hardest to adjust to that lack of energy they get from 60,000 fans every second week.
“That is a massive thing to lose and I can see it causing Celtic a stumble, especially in one of the cups.
“If Nicola Sturgeon decides to continue to take control then the best we can hope for is very small crowds, but if it is long-term then Celtic would be impacted more than any other team.
Apart from the ones facing insolvency events, presumably, which is most of them.
“The other major worry I have about the club is that they have lost a few players and don’t have the same numbers in the squad.
“The new season is action-packed and it will be relentless with Europe and internationals.
“It might be that Celtic need to prioritise and if they were to look at the trophies then the Betfred Cup is probably the least important now.
“It is a competition that has lost its way. I have won it a couple of times but it is one that Neil Lennon could look to play some of the youngsters and fringe players.
“Celtic will still want to win the Betfred Cup, of course they will, because they are used to winning everything.”
Incredibly, he gets paid for that nonsense. Though its not his insight that earns his money.
As with Walker, its his moral flexibility.
Referee Kevin Clancy has also laid his cards on the table by declaring…
“I can guarantee that the referees officiating know exactly what’s at stake this season.
“We are under no illusion that every decision, in almost every game, is going to be scrutinised to a level that even the media probably haven’t seen for a long time.
“We really do know what is at stake.
which turned into headlines such as these…
Kevin Clancy on the looming Celtic and Rangers storm as he revisits Michael Beale incident
The whistler is well aware that Scottish football is heading for its fiercest season in decades.
Michael Beale, the coach who pulls Steven Gerrards strings called him a cheat and received a ban, and the referees will have to be strong as without crowds , they’ll hear more of the abuse from the sidelines…and the pitch.
The Scotsman headline was
Celtic’s ten-in-a-row bid will pile pressure on referees says Kevin Clancy
Official says lack of VAR and no fans to keep focus will not help in such a vital season
The real pressure, deftly put aside by the paper will come from challengers, and isn’t reflected in the title…and probably won;t be all season.
It’s going to be tough, and with the odds stacked against any real challenge on the field from Ibrox, we need to look for another strategy, because make no mistake, they’ll do, or try to do whatever it takes to stop the ten.
Including the use of a new team bus, loaned to them from the private collection of former chairman Dave King..
Yesterday, we had a somewhat disturbing image…
prompting an equally disturbing reply…
Caption : Charlie Adams tries to sniff out why everyone sings about his sisters pants