Midfield steel can keep City in promotion hunt

Columnist Edward Seaman
Columnist Edward Seaman

With a number of results going our way this week, it has provided us with another real opportunity to put the cat amongst the pigeons tomorrow.

Win at Watford and we heap pressure on the teams above us, teams that are starting to show signs of slipping up.

Bournemouth, Derby and Brentford all dropped points during the week, putting City in a much healthier position than a few weeks ago.

Two men that are going to be the key for City are Alex Tettey and Bradley Johnson.

The City defence has been criticised this season but with Tettey and Johnson in front of them, they are much more protected, as we saw against Wolves last Saturday.

It was City’s third clean sheet in four matches, a sign of a more balanced team under Alex Neil — the proof being that it took City 14 matches to register their last three clean sheets.

And with Bradley Johnson signing a new contract, it seems like an appropriate time to heap credit on the former Leeds man.

Johnson is another one of those players who has his critics amongst City fans but his form this season has been well worthy of his new deal.

Eight goals for a midfielder at this stage of the season is an impressive record, let alone for someone considered a defensive-minded one.

It is not just the goals, but his work-rate and desire to succeed. Throughout the season I have talked about a lack of leadership at the club but in Johnson we have a player who clearly has the respect of his teammates.

Johnson is a member of a strong City midfield which has been added to by Graham Dorrans this week.

Dorrans is a player with immense quality, let alone in this division, and the fact he turned down Premier League moves to join City speaks volumes for the ambitions of the club and the player.

Hopefully he can be a key asset ahead of what is set to be a key period, starting with Watford tomorrow.