CELTIC striker Tony Watt has been called ‘lazy and unfit’ by boss of loan side K Lierse SK - despite scoring a debut goal for the Belgian side.
Stanley Menzo watched the young Celtic forward come off the bench to seal a 2-0 win at home to Kortrijk at the weekend but hit out at the 19-year-old at full time and again at training the following day.
The Ajax legend said: “I spoke to Tony after the game and told him what he needed to do to get fit and to become better.
“I think he has talent. But he has to do more with that talent.”
Watt, who scored a stunning winner against Barcelona in the Champions League less than a year ago, was sent to the Belgian side in order to boost his confidence. But Menzo added: “It is not just about scoring goals. Of course, we want him to score goals. But he won’t score the goals he CAN score because physically he’s not good.”
Menzo revealed that Watt had agreed with some of his points but had been ‘disappointed’ by others. The former Ajax goalkeeper explained: “I don’t know him so well to know how he is and how he worked in Glasgow.,
“I see him as the type who thinks by doing a little bit he can get a lot. I think that is wrong. I told him by doing more he can be a much better player.”
However, the Lierse boss added: “If he scores the winner against Barcelona then he must have talent.”
Watt told Lierse’s official TV channel: “Before I came on the coach said go and do your job, your job is scoring goals, after the game he said I’ll play on Monday to improve my fitness.
“There’s a lot more to come and if I don’t start the matches I’ll come on and try my best again.”
The Lierse side, who have one-time Rangers target Enar Jääger in their squad, face Lommel United in the Belgian Cup this Wednesday before taking on Anderlecht at the weekend.
Watt’s manager at Celtic, Neil Lennon, said at a press conference that he agreed with Menzo, but admitted he was unhappy that the Lierse boss had gone public with his comments: “I’m disappointed Stanley has made it public obviously, but he obviously felt the need to do that.
“Hopefully Tony will take that on board. He has to apply himself better.”
Lennon said that he hoped Watt would build on his goal against Kortrijk, and come back to compete for a first-team place.
“Hopefully Tony will progress the way we want him to progress”, Lennon added. “It is essential for someone his age to want to every day get better and every day improve his game.”