JOHNSON IS READY FOR THE JANUARY SALES
LEE Johnson believes a bumper transfer window can save Barnsley’s season as they look to get out of trouble – and reach Wembley.
The Tykes are far too close to League One’s trapdoor for comfort, despite the morale-boosting victory over a similarly struggling Blackpool to close out 2015.
And Johnson’s first port of call in the New Year is the loan market, with deals for Ben Pearson, Aidan White and Lloyd Isgrove all up for renewal.
Defender Reece Wabara’s short-term deal is also set to expire this month.
And with the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy area final clash with Fleetwood Town to keep an eye on, Johnson is braced for some wheeling and dealing.
“We’ve seen the likes of Adam Hammill come in and he’s been brilliant and Conor Hourihane has upped his game as well,” said Johnson.
“I think that truly good players make others good players and that’s the key. If we can get one or two more of them, we will be flying because that makes a big difference in this division.
“We are in the JPT area final which means any player coming in really needs to be eligible to play in that game as it is so important to us.We all want that Wembley date and that sort of narrows the market for us.”
Johnson also admits he may have to fend off interest for Irish midfielder Hourihane, 24, who continues to move from strength to strength after leaving Plymouth in 2014.
“He’s added another dimension to his game and his communication has improved 100 per cent – now he’s being a leader on the pitch,” added Johnson.
“He is a clever lad and I think he can definitely play at a higher level, but hopefully with us.”
TARGETS: Lee Johnson