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Fixture News

In opposition: Sunderland - what they're saying

26 December 2021

Lee Johnson was appointed as head coach of Sunderland AFC in December 2020, inking an initial two-and-a-half year deal with the club. Since his arrival to the Stadium of Light, he has helped the Black Cats win the 2021 Papa John’s Trophy defeating Tranmere Rivers 1-0 at Wembley Stadium.

The former long-time Yeovil Town (2001-06) and Bristol City (2006-12) player was capped in more than 200 games for Yeovil Town, and more than 175 games for Bristol City. At Yeovil Town, he helped the Glovers achieve promotion twice, reaching Sky Bet League One, on his way to being named player of the year for three consecutive seasons – all while playing under his father, Gary. He would also play for his father at Bristol City, helping the club win promotion to the EFL Championship following the 2006-07 season. His side would fall just short of winning promotion to the Premier League during the 2007-08 season, losing 1-0 to Hull City in a play-off final. As a manager, Johnson began his career at Oldham Athletic in March 2013, making him the youngest manager in the EFL at the time at just 31 years old.

He spent two seasons at Oldham before serving a year at Barnsley from February 2015 until February 2016, when he took charge at relegation-threatened Bristol City, who were competing in the Championship. He stayed with Bristol City until July 2020, while at the time being the longest-serving manager in the Championship before departing from the club.

 

Head Coach Lee Johnson said...

On the team’s play at Arsenal in the Carabao Cup:

“I thought the lads played really well in patches. It’s a massive lesson for them – the best lesson you could possibly feel. We had some corners and wide free-kicks a couple of shots on goal, and we looked dangerous.

“They all aspire to be top-level players, but are we doing everything to be able to develop top-level players? I think we are, but for them to feel it, I think it sharpens the pencil with everything – body fat, the details on passing drills, everything.”

 

On the recent injury to Nathan Broadhead:

“He has pulled his hamstring, but we don’t know yet to what extent. It was disappointing to lose him the other night. It was a big blow.”

 

On the players being asked to step up during this injury-riddled period: 

“We have players like [Alex] Pritchard and Elliot Embleton. We’ve got Leon Dajaku as well. So, we’ve got that versatility whether it be to go one up top, or to bring someone in to partner Ross Stewart.”

 

Assistant coach Jamie McAllister was on press duty ahead of the match:

“I think Doncaster have lost five out of the last six. We’re on a very good run at the moment, unbeaten in seven and our focus is to keep that form up in the league."

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