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Johnson lays down house rules

Reporter: Matthew Chambers
Date online: 27 June 2014

ATHLETIC’S players have been told exactly what is expected of them in the coming season.

Training began at their first pre-season meeting yesterday, and will occupy more player time in the run-up to the new season. Manager Lee Johnson hopes to double-up daily sessions this summer, with players resting at a local hotel in-between.

Johnson used the sessions to get a first look at new signings Joseph Mills, Mike Jones and Brian Wilson.

“It’s like your first day back at school,” he said. “We’ve got some good characters here and I’m sure the new guys will integrate very quickly.

“As much as you get frustrated and torn throughout the season, I have missed everyone. To get back into the routine and the banter has been really nice. We’ve got two days of easing back into it.”

Anton Rodgers could get a chance to impress all over again in training. The midfielder (21) is out of contract after not featuring for Athletic since the FA Cup tie against Liverpool in January.

A knee operation scuppered the latter half of his season and Johnson will give him a chance to impress if he doesn’t sign elsewhere.

“I’d like him to come back in pre-season and see how the injury is,” he said. “I think it is important to be fair to him. He represents decent value and there is potential for him to play in a midfield three.”


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