Johnson targets pre-season lift

Big things were expected of Johnson when he broke into the City
first team under Stuart Pearce in 2006. However, the 22-year-old’s
progress has been badly affected by injury, starting with an
abdominal problem that kept him on the sidelines for most of last
season. Without rediscovering top form, Johnson did at least force
his way back into the first-team picture this term, only to suffer
a major knee injury in training just before Christmas that ruled
him out for the remainder of the campaign. Johnson could be
forgiven for allowing his fitness worries to get him down. Instead,
the former England Under-21 star is buoyant again after receiving
the green light to step up his recovery. And he is eager to be
available again when City begin preparations for a campaign that
could yet include Champions League combat for the first time when
Roberto Mancini’s men return to training after their summer break.
“No player wants to have to go through such a long recovery and it
has just been bad luck that I have had two in a row early in my
career,” Johnson told the club website. “Having recovered from a
serious injury before means that this time I am a little more
experienced and can deal with the frustrations much better. “It is
just a matter of time, patience and hard work now. “If everything
goes to plan I am looking at the start of next season to be
hopefully joining in with training sessions again.”