You have to hand it to Hugh Keevins.
There aren’t many hacks who could have watched last night’s footballing fiasco in the Aviva Stadium and then wrote the article that he has today, one that reeks of ignorance, spite and his own appalling lack of judgement.
The article is about Celtic’s “flops”. And Bolingoli, Barkas and Ajeti are flops and no mistake. All signed by the same manager, by the way, although that is never mentioned. The manager one prominent pro-board writer said was hired over better qualified people because he knew how to spend Celtic’s money better than anyone else.
The Friends of the Man have a lot to answer for.
Keevins could have done what so many other tired, clapped out hacks have done and repeated all this tiresome pish about how those were bad moves in the transfer market and it would have been just another sub-par story stating the obvious.
But he went further, turning it into a deeply personal attack on Barkas … and lauding the brilliance of Craig Gordon. See what I mean about timing? What a joke this guy is. What an absolute yahoo in every way.
Imagine doing that this morning.
The article reveals how little Keevins actually understands the business he writes about.
Here’s his lines on Gordon. You’ll quickly see what I mean.
“The decision to let Craig Gordon go and sign Barkas was a palpable error in the first place. Gordon remains Scotland’s first choice goalkeeper and was voted Player of the Year last month for his outstanding contribution to Hearts. That adds up to misjudgement on the part of those who discarded him at Celtic Park.”
First, that Gordon is Scotland’s first choice doesn’t impress me one bit.
What Keevins is either not understanding or choosing to ignore is that at no point did those inside Celtic Park see him as our first choice. As to his “outstanding contribution to Hearts”, please … they finished third, and so far behind Ibrox, in second, that they were barely visible in the rear-view.
Both Joe Hart (54.3%) and Allan McGregor (41.4%) had a better shut-outs ratio than Gordon last season, and most of us recognise that his Player of the Year award owes more to a lack of desire to vote for a Celtic player than anything else.
I wrote this yesterday in the Craig Gordon piece; we offered him a deal to stay on the understanding that he would not be our first choice keeper. He was the one who rejected it and so his leaving was his decision.
It was not Celtic’s.
He went to Hearts for less money than what was on offer at Celtic Park and that’s just a fact whether Keevins wants to admit it or acknowledge it. Those inside the club had no intention of guaranteeing him games.
The long and short of it is that we thought there was better available out there.
Keevins real issue is with Barkas himself, and his article isn’t so much a critique of him as a player as it’s a deeply personal attack.
It is typical of this horror of a human being that he would write with such dripping malice of someone he doesn’t know … and his lack of basic footballing knowledge is absolutely appalling and should disqualify him from ever writing on it.
We signed Barkas because he was an experienced international and Champions League player. He had over 100 games for AEK Athens, where he was a cult hero. He had over a dozen caps for Greece.
We didn’t pluck this guy out of thin air. We didn’t just call around the clubs of Europe and ask if they had a spare goalkeeper … the move has not worked out, but that doesn’t mean that there wasn’t some logical basis for the decision.
“He is arguably the worst Celtic goalkeeper I have ever seen – and I can go back 60 years to Frank Haffey, the man who lost nine goals to England at Wembley while playing for Scotland before leaving the club and emigrating to Australia,” Keevins wrote.
Which I’m afraid is about as stupid as anything he’s ever written, and there is plenty of competition where that’s concerned. I suggest he hasn’t seen as much of Celtic as someone who used to write books about us ought to have.
Where’s Cervi? Where’s Hedman? Mark Brown anybody? Rab Douglas? Ian Andrews?
I could go on, but the general drift is being gotten, and these are just the names I remember from my own personal experiences. Throwing Barkas in as the worst keeper he’s ever seen at Celtic is just sniping for the sake of it and proves that Keevins really hasn’t a clue.
It is amazing to me that Keevins manages to outdo himself in idiocy time after time.
Just when you think he’s scraped the bottom of the barrel, he manages to go lower.
Incredible stuff and really, that The Record and the Sunday Mail believe this guy is worth a salary whilst good writers and real journalists scrape out a living … well it hints at the audience they aim for.
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