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Johnson praises "outstanding" team performance

Lee Johnson spoke of his pride after seeing City jump to third in the Sky Bet Championship with a 2-1 win against Middlesbrough.

City grabbed two second-half goals inside three minutes, courtesy of Joe Bryan and Jamie Paterson.

The Robins were dominant but saw their led cut back to 2-1 through a Hordur Magnusson own goal.

But they held out to secure the win and go level on points with Sheffield United.

Head coach Johnson told BCTV: "I'm delighted. I thought it was an outstanding performance, an outstanding result. I'm very proud because it took a real team effort to beat a good side like Middlesbrough and you can see the quality they have on the ball.

"I thought it was an excellent Championship game and a brilliant one for us because we will learn a lot from that.

"You learn a lot from losses but you also learn in wins and there were some really good bits about our play today, some areas we need to improve on but I thought we were outstanding.

"I thought the energy of our players, the attitude, the tempo and willingness to fight for every ball and the quality we showed in the final third was top notch today."

WE GREW INTO THE GAME

He added: "I think it was going to be a bit cagey because both sides have got quality and both teams respect each other.

"I thought they had the better of the first 15 minutes and I thought we were good for the rest of the half and took a foot hold on the game, took a grip of the midfield and started releasing players wide.

"On the counter attack we looked bright. We continued in that vain in the second half and got the two goals. It was a little bit scary at the end but I trusted the fact that the subs who came on would give us the energy that we needed and the boys would do everything to stop Middlesbrough from scoring."

WHAT HE SAID

"I thought the energy of our players, the attitude, the tempo and willingness to fight for every ball and the quality we showed in the final third was top notch today."

LEE JOHNSON

WE BELIEVE IN OUR SCORING ABILITY

"We played our game well today and we can catch people when they get a little down from conceding one. 

"The second goal was a great counter attack from Aden Flint. It was a lovely goal and it is something we work on in training.

"We are a bit rigid at the moment with two centre-halves playing at full back but we look solid, the own goal apart, and it was a great finish from Maggy [Hordur Magnusson].

"We had to have the natural angles ahead of the ball and I think that is where Paterson and Bobby Reid were excellent tonight. They gave us an extra pass, tidied up the play when we needed to and they brought everybody time to come up from behind the ball.

STILL AREAS TO IMPROVE

"There are things that we can improve on. I thought our goal kick should have gone to Milan [Djuric] when he came on. I think we can go down the outside more when they changed their shape. We adapted our shape when they did and it gave us the solidarity and platform to become comfortable in the final minutes."

Johnson added: "If you had said to me that after 18 games we would be eight points ahead of Middlesbrough, I'd have taken that. I'm pleased with the players but we've made a conscious effort not to focus on league positions and focus on performances, so I won't be talking to the players about league positions at this stage.

"Maybe we'll talk about that in the final five or six games. We're in an evolution of the way we're playing and there are things we can improve on."

INJURIES

The side came through tonight's match unscathed although Paterson admitted to feeling his hamstring late on and was taken off as a precaution.

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