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Club News

Lee Johnson on Burton Albion

13 August 2015

With the Reds’ first home game of the season 48 hours away, the media caught up with Barnsley Head Coach Lee Johnson who gave his thoughts ahead of the Burton clash.

“I think it is going to be a very tough game for us,” Johnson said. “They have momentum, they’re a team that have been together a long time and haven’t added too many signings.

“They’re very organised and disciplined. We had someone at the game on Tuesday and they defended very well and had some threats on the breaks.

“It will be a difficult game for us, it isn’t going to be one we can turn up and win, we have to be at our absolute best to stand a chance of winning.

“Whenever you come up against a team that has been promoted that has confidence in themselves and in each other, it’s an important chemistry to the side.

“But we’re a good side and have a lot of talent, we’ll give the players the rest that they need until Saturday and make sure they come out firing on all cylinders.

“They’re probably quite assured of themselves because they’re used to winning. Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink has only lost three games since he’s been there so it can take you a long way.”

Last weekend’s opening day defeat to Chesterfield was followed up by a midweek win over Scunthorpe but Lee feels Saturday’s game will give the fans something to shout about.

He said: “It’s a good marker for us and you never get a second chance at a first impression and we have players who want to make that first impression and hopefully will make a good one on Saturday.”

“I was really disappointed and it hurt the defeat because it was a cup final mentality and we had mild depression for a couple of days, as did the players.

“It was a tough game against Scunthorpe but we did come through it and it was a bit of a character builder. There’s another on Saturday and they come thick and fast in this division and we’ve got to be up for it.”

As far as injuries go, Johnson does have a few doubts but expects to field a strong side.

“We have a few aching bodies but generally everyone is okay. Marley Watkins had a hip flexor problem but he is ok and Sam Winnall was suffering with blisters believe it or not.

“It was one of the nastiest blisters I’ve ever seen on the sole of his foot from the Chesterfield game so he was quite brave just to get out there.

“At Chesterfield the pitch was hard but I asked him whether he was wearing new boots and me he said no, whether or not he was lying I don’t know. But when I saw it, it did make me wince. 

“Ryan Williams will train with us today and I’m going to push him. He did an individual session with me and Dan Crowley against Scunthorpe and he came through that so I’m going to push him again and put more demand on him load wise with the ball.

“We want to protect the players so they last 50 games not three games or two games and keep breaking down.

“There has to be a time when we have to push it and it’s not a case of Ryan not wanting to push it.”

Johnson also hinted that there may be other potential moves in the offing before the transfer window closes.

“We’ve certainly got plans but it’s difficult to say we have moves ready to go because the majority of time they are other people’s players and a lot has got to go on.

“Naturally you do set wheels in motion for different scenarios or even two or three to happen.

“There’s good players everywhere and players we’re interested in because they are good players."



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