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Interviews

Johnson: It's important we battle for every point as a group

21 September 2023

Interviews

Johnson: It's important we battle for every point as a group

21 September 2023

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Manager Lee Johnson sat down with the local media on Thursday to preview Saturday's Sky Bet League One match away at Burton Albion.

The new manager took charge of his first match last weekend, which saw Oxford United claim all three points at Highbury Stadium. In his post-match interview, Johnson spoke about what needs work and has since had a week on the training ground with the squad at Poolfoot Farm.

Johnson has now made his first signing at Town boss, bringing in experienced defender Ben Heneghan. The former Blackpool and Sheffield Wednesday man will be eligible for the match at Burton, and the gaffer knows the traits the central defender brings to the current crop of players.

Johnson sat down with BBC Radio Lancashire on Thursday afternoon, and here's what he had to say:

On Burton Albion...

"We know it's a tight pitch at Burton and I know how much of a role our supporters can play in the game by giving us that strength shooting towards them.

"Burton are a strong and physical side, who like to play direct, but like any side in this division, they have their weaknesses so it's up to us to capitalise on those on Saturday.

"Having had one game in charge, I am trying to focus the lads on the process and not the outcome. In this league, you can put three wins together quickly and when I was at Barnsley we were bottom of the league and then got promoted so it is possible from the position we are in.

"There are 117 points to play for and it's important that we as a group battle for every single one of those points."

On his second week in charge...

"I have to say the lads have been brilliant, just like they were last week. I have really enjoyed working with them whilst also bringing a sense of enthusiasm to the setting. 

"It's important that by doing this, players and the staff buy into the philosophy I want to play. We've trained that way and they've been committed, but in the game last weekend, I could see some resilience and that might be down to the anxiety of getting a result, but it's a process and all about believing and getting a win this weekend will help speed that up all up."

On the signing of Ben Heneghan...

"Ben is at a good age, he's practically in his prime and I know we've picked him up on the back of an ACL injury, and that's not ideal for some, but he has performed really well in the testing and we feel like he's ready to go.

"It has been 10 months since that injury happened, but he's been training full-time with Sheffield Wednesday and has completed a couple of 90-minute games for them.

"Ben will bring experience and leadership qualities to Fleetwood. He is a very good defender in the box and he's very good on the ball so I feel we have a player with the right balance. 

"To be successful in this league, you need four strong centre-halves. We've got Josh Earl who can play there as well and for me now that unit is very strong. It's now important for me to get our top players on top form and that's both physically and mentally and everything we've done over the last week has been to accelerate that process."

Fleetwood Town supporters can watch the full interview on iFollow HERE! Why not cheer on the lads this weekend at Burton. Tickets are on sale up to kick-off on Saturday, with a price increase added if buying on the day - find the full details HERE!


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