NEIL Lennon has attributed the difficulties summer signing Vasilis Barkas has experienced settling at Celtic to the Covid-19 pandemic – but has told the Greek goalkeeper he must see an improvement on and off the park to reinstate him in his side.

There were high expectations among fans of the Parkhead club when Barkas was signed from AEK Athens for £5m in the summer to replace Fraser Forster.

However, the 26-year-old has failed to impress and he has lost his place to Scott Bain following a string of unconvincing displays at home and abroad.

Lennon feels that working in a bio-secure environment at Lennoxtown has made it hard for the 13-times capped player to integrate himself into the squad and

“I think it’s been difficult for him as it has been for all the new players coming in,” he said. "He’s come from a different country and different climate into a very restricted environment away from the training ground.

“Even at the training ground there are restrictions in terms of the dressing rooms and being able to see each other. So it’s been difficult to get him involved and for the new players to really get to know each other because the way the world is split up.

“The only time you’re all together is for training then you go home to an empty house and they can’t socialise together.”

Lennon added: “You have to look at the whole picture. He did ok, I think he can do better and I think he knows that. I think he’s getting more accustomed to the tempo of the game and the physicality and what’s required of him as a No1.

“I see Sunday as a chance to maybe making a few changes but not too many. All positions will be considered for the game. We don’t have any fresh injury worries from Thursday night.

“Whether I bring him in or not is irrelevant. I want to see an improvement in his body language and his functionality as a goalkeeper.”

Lennon believes the changes that are being made to the training ground at Lennoxtown will enable his squad to build a greater camaraderie.

“Having spoken to Broony about it he definitely feels it,” he said. “We’re looking at doing a refit at Lennoxtown where we can look at getting the players together more adhering to the social distancing rules.

“I think that’s been a mitigating factor – they feel a little bit distanced from each other at times. That’s what we’re going through at the minute, it’s not normal. I’m not saying it’s the be all and end all and it’s going to fix all our problems, but certainly it would help.”