Sunday, April 30, 2017
Charlton boss Karl Robinson: Tony Watt one of best players in League...

Charlton boss Karl Robinson: Tony Watt one of best players in League One – if we can keep him on track

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Charlton Athletic's Tony Watt attacks

Karl Robinson reckons he has one of League One’s top talents in Tony Watt – but keeping him on track is the major challenge.

There is no disputing the maverick talent of the 23-year-old Scot, who is back toiling on the training ground after his loan at Hearts was ended.

Since joining Standard Liege in July 2014 he has gone on to play for a further four clubs.

Watt looks set to be on the bench for Saturday’s derby with Charlton Athletic.

“So many people focus on Tony’s negatives,” said Robinson. “It’s so easy in our walk of life to do that – whether you are watching TV programmes or any sport. My job is to focus on the positive aspects of Tony Watt, and that he is one of the most talented footballers that we’ve got.

“Is he fit to compete for 90 minutes? Probably not yet. Is he a runner? No, he’s certainly not. Is he a top player? Yeah, he certainly is. It’s our job to try and find that balance of keeping him fit, happy and motivated – because if we can do all of that then I think we’ve got one of the best players in the league.

“Part of my job was to bring him back, look at him and develop him. He certainly wants to be here. Since he’s been here he’s been a breath of fresh air.

“You can imagine Tony Watt to be lively and cheeky. I love that about people. I’d rather have those type of people in the building. Josh is exactly the same – when things aren’t quite right they motivate the group and realign it to what we’re trying to do.

“Hopefully his clearance gets passed and he’ll be in the squad for Millwall. It’ll be another big player back in our ranks. Our bench on Saturday could be the likes of Ricky, Watt and then it’s whether Jake is ready yet.

“You look at the players on the bench – both young and old – and we’re suddenly starting to look a very good squad again.”

Sports Editor | South London Press sports editor since 2007 who has covered huge sporting events for the paper – Crystal Palace’s Championship play-off final, two trips to Wembley in the FA Cup and David Haye’s world heavyweight unification fight with Wladimir Klitschko. Previously sub-edited on the Sunday Mirror, Daily Star and Sport First. Former ClubCall deputy editor.

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Charlton boss Karl Robinson: Tony Watt one of best players in League...