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James Crawley


Posted Wednesday, December 26th 2018

Johnson calling for ‘steel and sparkle’ from his team

Lee Johnson believes City could have improved their forward play against Brentford after stretching their unbeaten run to six games. 

Both sides created a number of chances in BS3 in their Boxing Day encounter, with Eros Pisano’s first goal for the club cancelled out by Neal Maupay’s second-half strike.

Opportunities went begging as City failed to make the visitors pay, notably Famara Diédhiou going close with a header and fierce effort in the second half.

Initial thoughts on the game

“‘It’s a difficult one to assess because I know Brentford are a good side. I wanted us to attack more than the first half. To get the goal was great and it would have been nice to get the second goal.

“We didn’t really have enough territory to be able to do that: we juggled it about a bit at half-time and played forward a bit earlier, but we got ahead of steam and we fizzled out a little bit.

“That was partly because of Brentford’s quality but it’s a poor goal to concede from us, it’s a good goal from their point of view.”

The key to getting back on winning ways

“I think it’s about having that steel. You can talk about formation, having extra bodies in there, the boys are working their socks off. We need that bit of sparkle.

“We’re much better with goals against now but the goals for have dropped slightly.

“We’ve got to find our way and we’re 12th in the league…at times both teams cancelled each other out and that’s our challenge – to step up at home and get the runners moving forward.”

Praise for individual displays

“The lads individually are in decent form. It’s good to have Famara Diédhiou back and firing and playing well. Callum O’Dowda and Jamie Paterson have played like their usual selves in recent games.

On the fans being the 12th man

“We have a big game in three days’ time [Rotherham United] so rest and recovery is important. People must remember how much we need them on the terraces because there is a lot fatigue in all teams over Christmas, whether we make changes or not will be an important decision but the fans can really be our 12th man.”

Full interview on BCTV