Reds are on right track - Johnson

Published Dec. 10, 2010 7:15 a.m. ET

The Reds have recovered from a woeful opening eight Barclays Premier League matches which brought them just six points and left them in the bottom three. Eight games later they have added a further 16 to their tally and are now within seven points of fourth-placed Manchester City. The England international believes the whole team has started to settle into a new routine under manager Roy Hodgson, who arrived at the club in July. "The lads have been working very hard on the training field and trying to put the poor performances behind us and get on a bit of a run," he said. "It's always difficult for a new manager to come in and put his point across straight away. "It very rarely just happens in the first two or three games. "Now we're starting to play the way Roy is asking us to play, and the lads are coping well with it. "It's very good. A lot of the lads are taking to training and the different regimes. "We've got some fantastic players, great staff in and around the club, and I'm sure if we can keep playing like we are we'll be there or thereabouts." Liverpool's improved performances have mirrored those of Johnson's, who was badly out of sorts early in the season but has rediscovered some of his form. The right-back, set to make his 50th appearance for the club at Newcastle on Saturday, admits he had some difficulties earlier in the campaign. "I'm playing better now than I was at the start of the season," he added. "I know that and I always know how well I'm playing. I've picked things up a little bit now but the team's the most important thing. "If you always knew exactly what it was you'd never have a bad game, but we didn't have a long rest in the summer (because of the World Cup), then we came back and I got loads of niggling injuries. "It was hard to get a run in the team and get that consistency every week. Touch wood the injuries are now behind me." Johnson has been linked with a January move away from Anfield but Hodgson dismissed such a prospect. "Agents and newspapers. You don't have to look very far these days," said the manager. "As far as I am concerned Glen Johnson will be a Liverpool player certainly until the end of his contract and possibly beyond it. "We are very happy with him. He is a top-class player, an England international, so why should we want to lose him? Maybe his agent has other ideas."