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James Crawley

James Crawley writes

Posted Wednesday, July 11th 2018

We look in a really good place - Johnson

City head coach Lee Johnson has been encouraged by the aptitude shown by all of his players in pre-season so far.

A mixture of first-team and young stars featured in City's second friendly match ahead of the 2018/19 campaign, against Cheltenham Town on Tuesday night (July 10th).

Niclas Eliasson proved a constant threat and scored two goals, new signings Hakeeb Adelakun and Adam Webster also looked sharp, while Matty Taylor scored for the second game in a row to ensure another City 'Johnson Cup' victory.

Barely a foot was put wrong all match at the Woodspring Stadium and the youngsters who came on later into the fixture gave the League Two side a run for their money.

Speaking after the match, which City won 4-2, Johnson said: "We started fantastically, showed quality and we looked really strong. The likes of Jack Hunt, Liam Walsh and Korey Smith are all playing [against Newport County], like Jamie Paterson and Andreas Weimann too, so there are a lot of strong players to come back too.

"I thought the young lads did well too, they looked assured once they settled.

"We look in a really good place. You can see their physicality improving as well, thanks to their time away on loan, their summer programmes and we always try to leave the door open for them because one might come through [to the first team].

PRAISE FOR ELIASSON

"I saw some excellent performances out there tonight, particularly from Eliasson. We see what he can do day-in, day-out.

"Now we want to see him transfer his skills into an 11-a-side game and today he did that. I hope he continues that form between now and the end of the season."

Johnson also believes Taylor can continue his goalscoring form, with his sixth-minute goal against Cheltenham being his second goal in as many games.

"I want him to keep scoring," Johnson told bcfc.co.uk

"We saw Bobby [Reid] score those goals in pre-season last year and I said to Matty before this game that I want him to get in those areas and scoring goals breeds confidence. And what about Webster’s goal? That was unbelievable!"

JOHNSON CUP CELEBRATIONS

The win on Tuesday night meant a hat-trick of 'Johnson Cup' victories for Lee, as his side overcame a Cheltenham Town side managed by his dad, Gary.

"The lads have been in the dressing room, spraying champagne," Johnson joked.

He added: "Apparently it gets you into the Europa League as well this year. My prediction of having a Johnson in Europe within five years has come true!"

CITY V SHREWSBURY TOWN - TICKETS