Watt buzzing ahead of Champions League bow12/09/2012 - 18:38:31
Striker Tony Watt has backed Celtic to hold their own in a tough Champions League group – and possibly even shock Barcelona at Parkhead.
As well as the Catalan giants, the Hoops will also face Benfica and Spartak Moscow in Group G as they bid to progress on the European stage.
But, rather than fear the challenges which lie ahead, youngster Watt is relishing the prospect of facing some of the best players in the world.
The teenager, who was today named Clydesdale Bank Premier League young player of the month for August, said: “It was one of the groups I was looking at and saying ’Hopefully we can go in there.’
“Barcelona are the best team in the world, but Benfica and Spartak are beatable. At home, even Barcelona are beatable.
“I know people think that’s unrealistic, but you never know with Celtic at Parkhead – it’s just a different level.
“It’s a massive club and we’ve got a good, young set of players.
“Hopefully we can take that on to the park and get a few results and qualify for the last 16.
“In the home games in the Champions League, the roar is just unbelievable, with 60,000 fans going mental.
“It’s unbelievable, there is nothing like it. Even just being on the bench for the last game and coming on and hearing the fans singing was like a different world.”
Watt was plying his trade with Airdrie United before sealing a move to Celtic’s under-19 set-up in January 2011.
The 18-year-old has impressed so far this term, having burst on to the scene with a double against Motherwell in April, and says an appearance at the Nou Camp next month would be the icing on the cake.
Watt said: “It’s just unbelievable the difference there has been.
“I was playing under-17s for Airdrie and now I’m playing for Celtic.
“You are playing at Second Division parks every week that have one or two stands and then you come here to Celtic Park and it all changes.
“Hopefully I can be involved against Barca at the Nou Camp. If I am, happy days. If I’m not, hopefully the boys can get a result.
“I’ve been handed a few chances by the manager and it’s been good to get minutes on the park, especially at first-team level. It’s good to be involved.”
Injury to Greek striker Georgios Samaras could pave the way for further game time, but Watt insisted: “It’s not good when one of your best players is injured.
“We need him in the Champions League games because he is one of our main threats.
“You never wish for any of your players to have injuries. You would rather have a full squad than look for personal benefits.
“We’ve got another couple of strikers as well anyway so I just need to wait and see how it goes.
“If I’m on the bench this weekend, that’s good. If I start, even better.”
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