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Monakana told not to waste his talent
Albion winger Jeffrey Monakana has been warned to “get his act together” to avoid wasting his talent.
Monakana has yet to even make a first team squad for the Seagulls since joining on an 18-month development contract at the end of January.
The 20-year-old joined Crawley on a month’s loan two weeks ago and Reds boss John Gregory has been shocked by the former Arsenal trainee’s lack of fitness.
Monakana has come off the bench in Crawley's last two games and Gregory says he is so out of shape he would not last 45 minutes.
Gregory said: “His fitness levels are appalling for somebody of his ability. Jeff has got a hell of a lot of talent but that's no good if you don't have the fitness to go with it. “I'm not sure Jeff can start a match and finish it and that is why we have only used him for 20 minutes. I know that if I start him he might struggle to even reach half-time. “I'm hoping this is a big wake-up call for him because he's a talented player. He started at Arsenal and now he's at Crawley so that says it all. He needs to get his act together and hopefully he will.”
Monakana had hoped moving to Albion would kick-start his career after falling out of favour at Preston but Gregory believes a diet of academy football has had the opposite effect.
Gregory added: “He's been out of picture, playing academy football where the training levels are very low and you kind of get demotivated.
“I don't think anyone has put their arm around him and kept him involved at first team level. Nobody has told him what a good player he is and tried to get him to replicate what we saw on Saturday (against Crewe) over 90 minutes as opposed to little fits and starts.
“Jeff can be a match-winner but you have to ask why Preston let him go. I know why Preston let him go, it was attributed to his fitness levels and maybe his lifestyle. What you see for 15 minutes is not the whole picture. I see all the other bits and pieces.”
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