Lee Johnson

Lee Johnson profile image

Player Information

Head Coach
07 June 1981

Position: Head Coach
Joined: February 2016

In the 2017/18 season Lee Johnson guided Bristol City to a memorable semi-final of the League Cup and 11th place in the Sky Bet Championship – the club’s highest finish for eight years. 

That Carabao Cup run saw City beat Premier League Watford, Stoke City, Crystal Palace and famously Manchester United before losing over two legs to Manchester City, whose manager Pep Guardiola saluted Johnson for his team’s willingness to play with endeavour.  

The victory over Manchester United that made the football world sit up, came two years after Johnson returned to Ashton Gate in February 2016 from Barnsley, completing a circle that had seen him make 199 appearances as a Robin. 

As a young player Johnson spent time at Arsenal and Watford, before making his name in the game with Yeovil Town, winning promotions from non-league, League Two and League One. 

He joined Scottish Premier League Hearts in 2006, before returning to England six months later to sign for City. 

Johnson was a key figure as City secured automatic promotion from League One in 2006/07, and continued as a mainstay in the team that reached the Championship play-off final the following year. 

He left Ashton Gate in January 2012 for a return north of the border with Kilmarnock, beating Celtic 1-0 to lift the Scottish League Cup, but just over a year later his playing career came to an end following his appointment as manager of Oldham Athletic.  

At the age of 31 he was the youngest boss in the Football League.  

Johnson quickly guided the Latics out of the relegation zone and the following season embarked on a recruitment drive which included securing the services of Korey Smith, whom he handed the captain’s armband. 

His work at Boundary Park led to him becoming a recognised coach and Barnsley made a move for Johnson in February 2015, appointing him as head coach to replace Danny Wilson. 

Johnson guided Barnsley away from the relegation zone, ultimately achieving a top-half finish in League One. 

His last game in charge of the Tykes saw them book a place at Wembley in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy. The team Johnson left behind went on to win at Wembley twice – getting their hands on the JPT, but also securing promotion via the League One play-offs.