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James Crawley

James Crawley writes

Posted Monday, February 26th 2018

Play-offs the target now - Johnson

Bristol City have conceded hope of automatic promotion, says Lee Johnson.

His side are now 13 points away from Cardiff City who occupy second spot in the Sky Bet Championship.

The difference was ten points ahead of Sunday's Severnside derby, which the Robins lost 1-0.

It's been a tough 2018 for Johnson's side, but they remain in the play-off pack thanks to a brilliant run in the first half of the campaign.

While Johnson still has "belief" in his players, he told BCTV that any chance of promotion to the Premier League - an achievement which would be a club first in the modern era - will have to come via the play-offs. 

"Not now, that’s gone," he said, when asked if competing for second spot was still on the table.

"It’s a play-off spot that we are after now and we have to win enough games to be able to do that.

"We should play without fear now. We played with fear when on the ball yesterday so that’s what I want to take away.

"I want to say it’s my fault. If the players play the way I want them to and we don’t win then that’s my fault, but don’t abandon the way I want you to play and lose because that’s the worst thing you can do. It means you won’t be at this football club as of next season and I’ll bring in the guys that will play the system.

"Our evolution as a team has grown and now we need to go again. As I said, I have never been one to settle for mediocrity."