No More Excuses For Johnson!

Last updated : 13 January 2014 By Tott Dixon - Seaham

Gus Poyet: "I will help him and I will try to help him to put him there," said Poyet.

"And I will tell you why. If Johnno makes the World Cup we are in the Premier League for sure.

"Normally when you reach 26 there are no more excuses.

"You're experienced enough, but you're not old yet, so you still have the pace and the ability, so that's when you have to be at your best.

"You understand the game better, you have played against everybody everywhere so there is no pressure you can't handle.

"So I hope that his form now will give us a big opportunity to stay up."

Johnson left Manchester City in the summer of 2012 in a bid for regular first-team football.

After a long fight for form, Poyet now believes the 26-year-old is hitting his peak again.

"Johnno today, he would make the difference at any level," said Poyet.

"He's been like that for the last few weeks.

"I always believe there's a responsibility on the player, he needs to take responsibility for playing well or badly.

"But certain players need a team to perform one way or play one kind of football.

"We were looking to get that style of play for him to take advantage and make the difference.

"We've been getting close, but we couldn't go on to the next level and today we clicked.

"When someone stands up and performs like Johnno today, then you've got a great chance.

"Johnno needs to play for a team that keeps the ball, gives him the ball at the right time, gives him the space to break.

"It's not like you go into any system and just play.

"We were trying, it wasn't easy at first, but in the last two or three weeks when we've been passing better and the team has been more solid, that's given him the freedom to perform.

"He's got the quality to go and make a difference."