Translation:I am afraid that he does not look closely.
It does; it's one of the optional units that you can find in the Lingot Store. Sure would have been nice if the people who downvoted your comment had taken the time to be constructive and mention that since I'm sure that you're not the only one who missed it. I guess that doesn't make them feel big like anonymously criticising through a downvote does though.
Why doesn't DL admit that "well" fits this case too? You can watch closely in order to watch well, but the point is watching well! If you want to be creative you could translate "look/watch better" because "guardare" should imply "vedere apposta, con intenzione" = "to look willingly, intentionally", but this is not a masterpiece to be debated. They want to learn Italian, not to get useless & bad items to fill head! May DL let anybody reach to think by himself that in order to watch well it is usually useful to get nearer if possibile!
I don't blame you; subjunctive tense is mind bending especially for English speakers, where the form is largely dead.
I find it useful to refer to verb tables such as this one: http://italian.about.com/library/verb/blverb_guardare.htm. You can see that it's divided into groups like "Indicative" (the verb forms that indicate that something has definitely happened), "Subjunctive" (which is the form that you use when something is (amongst other things) a doubt or a wish, and Imperative (which is the form used when giving an order or instruction).
What BatInTheRain is saying is that in this case the verb isn't imperative; it isn't giving an instruction. Nor is it Indicative; it isn't saying that the he DEFINITELY has not looked closely. It is instead saying that the person BELIEVES (or fears that) he has not looked closely. Therefore you can't use the indicative form of the verb (guarda, in the table that I pointed you to above) but rather the subjunctive form (which you'll find under the heading Subjunctive, then Presente, in the table that I pointed to above. That is, "guardi" is used rather than "guarda".
Unfortunately this is the kind of thing that will only come naturally with practice. A LOT of practice. While it's important to understand the grammar, it's impossible to think in terms of grammatical rules when you're trying to construct a sentence.
I understand why this sentence can't end in "he doesn't look well" because that suggests that he appears to be ill. What I don't understand is why this sentence can't end in "he doesn't watch well." This is not exactly synonymous with "he doesn't watch closely," but it seems to allow for other flaws in watching besides "not closely." This translation isn't standard English, but it seems to me to capture more fully the meaning of the Italian. What's up?
As Italian native I can say that "Guardare bene" can only mean "to look closely / carefully". In some circumstances it could mean "to pay attention", but not in this case anyway. It just doesn't mean "to look good" or "to look well", with the meaning of having a good appearance. So I am not sure that the English translation "he doesn't look well" is correct, because that would have a quite different meaning in English, at least with no context given.
Thanks! So linguee has a couple of bad translations in it. (Not a big surprise.)
In this sentence, I think "I'm afraid he does not pay attention" would make a lot of sense. I imagine a teacher talking to the parents of a student. "He does not look well" is therefore entirely wrong.
I think that the point that I get out of this is that English uses "look" in both an active and a passive sense and the two are quite different in meaning, whereas "guardare" is only used in the active sense of "looking at". You could find the occasional translation of "guarda bene" to mean "look well" but that would only be in a context where it means to look closely.