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Club News

Johnson on Rochdale

21 January 2016

Club News

Johnson on Rochdale

21 January 2016

Ahead of this weekend’s clash with Rochdale, Barnsley Head Coach Lee Johnson addressed the media and gave his thoughts on the opposition.

A victory for the Reds would be their fourth in succession, keeping the side unbeaten since the turn of the year.

The Head Coach is confident the side can continue in their fine run of form and gave his team news ahead of Saturday’s game.

He said: “I think we’ve played better away recently but really we’re looking to continue that good performances attacking-wise and defensively and add that bit of creativity to the team.

“Our dangerous players, Hammill, Watkins, Winnall, will all look to get at their defence.

“Josh Scowen is looking alright, it’s just trusting his knee but he’s 50/50 for the bench on Saturday. We have just a couple of knocks and niggles but we’re hoping to name a similar squad to last weekend.

“Harry White is impressing and has all types of finishes. He’s still developing outside the box but if he keeps showing a good attitude he has a good chance of breaking through.

"I think the lads sometimes get a bit nervous at home and it’s a case of making sure that they don’t by kicking up the Oakwell crowd."

The game also sees the return of Keith Hill to Oakwell, adding further fuel to the fire for Barnsley but Johnson is full of admiration for the former Reds manager.

“I like him a lot because he’s a character, I have a lot of time for him and he’s a very good manager.

“I know he’s got a lot of history here and is a bit of a marmite character, but come three o’clock Saturday, whatever we’re wearing, the focus will be on the pitch and hopefully we’ll come out on top.”

On the transfer front, Johnson is hopeful of retaining all of the club’s assets but added anything could happen within the next 10 days of the window.

“Things change quickly,” Johnson said. “At the moment there’s nothing as far as major spending going on but things change incredibly quickly in this game.

“There’s always interest in our players because we’ve got lots of young players from Championship and Premier League clubs.

“We hope to retain all of our players in the January window, unless we get an offer that we cannot turn down.

“We’ll continue the way we are but we’re always ready to adjust and adapt. Ideally we’d love to keep this group but we’re a club in League One and players may want to move on.”

Johnson is approaching a year in charge of the club and gave his assessment of the side at the point this season compared with last season.

He said: “I think we’re playing better now than at this point last year and we have had a little bit of luck that we haven’t had earlier on this season.

“Our last couple of performances have been pretty convincing but we aren’t out of the woods just yet.”

With the division the way it is, the Reds Head Coach is hopeful of taking the side on a run that could see them push up the league and challenge for the top places.

“This division is so open and anyone could go on a run and hopefully it will be us. We’re a bit light in some areas and in a greedy world you’d have two players for every position.

“Ultimately we have to develop our youth and use the young players sporadically on the bench. You’re assessing the situation every day.”

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