Reporter: MATTHEW CHAMBERS
Date online: 20 March 2013
Johnson’s delight as Latics win
NEW manager Lee Johnson was delighted with the way Athletic's players delivered his instructions on the pitch to gain three vital points in the battle against relegation.
Goals from Robbie Simpson and Jean-Yves Mvoto were followed by a third from Jose Baxter as nerves frayed a little in the second half against Hartlepool.
Johnson couldn’t hide his joy at picking up a victory to push Athletic out of the bottom four with games in hand over rivals.
Baxter was the talk of the night. Restored to a floating position behind main striker Lee Barnard, he set up the first two goals with superb crosses before finishing the game with a clinical third, his 13th of the season.
“He has that bit of genius in him, doesn’t he?” said Johnson of Baxter. “He may play in different positions, but I wanted to take the shackles off.
“It meant Simpson had to do a job and he did it very well. I know that is not his ideal position, but we needed someone out there to be aggressive and he was fantastic as well.
“Korey Smith, in the first half showed the sort of player he is and little Connor Brown has taken to what I have tried to do by giving him the freedom to make his own decisions.
“There were a couple of things (defensively) that were slightly off-line. But they put their bodies on the line and protected the goal. They deserved the clean sheet.”
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