Date: 16th April 2015 at 9:43pm
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Manager Lee Johnson has said that he’s already starting to put plans in place for next season and he’s admitted there’s some youngsters at the club he wants to take a closer look at.

Audio – Johnson On Summer Plans (click here)

Speaking to the Official Site with the Notts County game behind us as well as hopes for a play off battle this term, Johnson explained that his plans for the 2015-16 season were well underway now with three games left and these three games now gave him an opportunity to look at our potential stars of the future from the youth ranks.

And we may get the chance to see some of them in the Peterborough game.

‘We’re quite positive, there’s a couple of players I’d like to see. There are some who have impressed me and some I’d like to see. Not just the younger lads but some of the senior pros as well. I’ll be looking forward to putting a team out that the fans will come down and see what we’re about for next year.’

Johnson goes on to say that some of the background work that’s gone on since he came in has involved getting the recruitment team in place and giving them instructions on what should be a priority for the summer because he knows last season it was a bit of a ‘scramble’ trying to get things in place for pre season and the club doesn’t want a repeat of that and he certainly doesn’t either.

‘I want to go into the season with my squad in place. Maybe little sprinkles of genius at the back end of it, but I do want is those winning type of mentality players coming in early. We’re going to be quite ruthless this year. There are a lot of good players on the market and it’s not going to be one of those where we leave offers open to players for too long. We feel that we can be quite strong on what people’s market value is.’

The gaffer went on to say, having already commented that he felt the squad was too big, is that he wants an acceptable first team signing set of between eight to twelve players this summer – those will be players signed and those we want to resign and then with others at the club who remain under contract that he feels he can work with, as well as making sure we have space for a pathway for talented youngsters, that will provide the depth, competition and cover for the season.

‘It’ll probably be between eight and 12 players, in my opinion, that includes the ones we want to resign. As it stands they’re available to the free market. It’s fair to say we’ll need to make signings, you can’t make the same mistake twice. We want to push and if you look at it, we’ve done well to get out of trouble.’

The rest of the business will be departures.

Those eight to twelve resigned or signed will have to fit the model he wants to employ and be able to live up to what he asks of them though.

‘I think as time goes on, people will understand what I want. There`s no doubt that I want to play a high pressing game. It`s easy to say that, you can`t do that for 90 minutes as it`s impossible. What you can do is you can recognise the times when you press high and try and suffocate the opposition by getting a formation, a shape and a group of players that are fit, hungry, willing runners. If we`d have had a couple more willing runners on Tuesday night (Notts County), that could have been a four-nil and it should have been, in my opinion. But we ended up dropping deeper and deeper, then conceding possession and hanging on really. That`s not something we want to do.’

Johnson goes on to say it’s not really about fitness because they are professionals and they are fit, it’s about that mentality to want to constantly drive on, not give up, not take the breather and accept you are going to be knackered come full time.

‘There`s going to be a really big push. It`s not that our players aren`t fit, they are fit, but have they got the capabilities to go to the lengths that we need them to? It`s okay physically but you`ve got to be able to do that technically as well, otherwise we would just go and get a group of marathon runners. That`s no good because we want to play the right football. We`ll be coaching to our particular system, if you like. The players that come in will be required to have the individual attributes that each of our positions require on a tactical basis, technical basis, physical basis and also a mentality and lifestyle basis. If you fit into that, fantastic, we can narrow people down.’

With Peterborough up next at the weekend, he went on to say briefly about the test they will pose.

‘They`ve had some exceptional forward players in previous years. They`re probably about right where they are. They`ve had some good games, some good form and dips. They`ve changed their manager which surprised me, because Darren Ferguson was a very good manager for the division. The new guy came in and did well early. It`ll be a tough game. But I`m not sure what they`ll do. They might give an opportunity to a couple as well. It`ll be interesting but, hopefully, people will now start seeing the future, if you like.’

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