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Manager looks for reaction

26 April 2013

Johnson's challenge for Orient match

Lee Johnson is looking for a positive reaction from his players in tomorrow's final npower League One game of the season at Leyton Orient.

Latics' manager was unhappy with his players after the midweek defeat at Shrewsbury Town where he made eight changes as he took a close look at his squad players.

Johnson said: "I am critical for the right reasons, not because I don't like the players.

"If I see standards fall short, I want to help them.

"There were some home truths after the defeat at Shrewsbury and you could say I dropped in a hand grenade. We will see who can handle it or which players go under.

"Do they have the mental strength and how do they react? Do they get aggressive, more technical, run more, stop running, give up, moan and sulk?

"All these things I need to know about players who I have not seen regularly in first-team scenarios."

Johnson added the last two months have been hectic in terms of the number of games played.

He continued: "It has been a rollercoaster season and a very intense period since I came here. It was bound to catch up with us at some stage.

"I was just disappointed the ones with the fresh legs didn't produce the energy which was required on the day.

"I told them they fell short which they knew because they are honest players."

Johnson added that he learned a lot from the midweek defeat and was disappointed as he believed had the players given an extra five-per-cent they would have won.

Latics' manager pointed out the positives from the Shrewsbury game were the performances of scholars Joe Cooper and Danny Gosset (pictured).

He said: "I purposely put Joe in at right back because their winger (Jon Taylor) is probably as good as you get in this division.

"He is nimble, tricky and clever and it was important for Joe to experience that. He started off not quite up to the pace, but by the end of the game he was up to it.

"Danny came on and was the biggest light of the whole match.

"He showed energy, put his foot in and broke forward. And while he is not ready to play 46 games, he is doing well."

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