‘We’ve got to win this game’: Oldham manager Lee Johnson states play-off ambitions for red-hot Latics

By Matthew Naylor

Oldham manager Lee Johnson has described Sunday’s home League One tie against Bradford City as a ‘six-pointer’ as he targets a play-off spot this season.

Athletic have won their last four games in all competitions and were unbeaten in November, as they begin a march up the table.

Johnson believes that the improvement in his side’s fortunes recently mean that more and more people will be flocking to Boundary Park to counter the “thousands” that Bradford will bring.

“It should be a great game,” Johnson told reporters.

“For us, this is a six-pointer. If we’ve got serious ambitions of getting into the play-offs then we’ve got to go and win this game.

“If you think where Phil Parkinson has taken them from and where they are now, he’s done excellently.”

Bradford, themselves, are unbeaten in three and are sitting just inside the coveted top-six, but only seven points ahead of Sunday’s hosts.

While Wolves and Leyton Orient have taken a clear lead as the top two targeting automatic promotion even at this early stage, the playoffs beckon as the best way for many of the rest to move up to the Championship.

“The pressure is exactly the same,” Johnson admitted when speaking of the difference between managing a winning and managing a losing side.

“The pressure is to do the best we can and that comes game-by-game and day-by-day.

In their bid to keep the run going, the Latics have bolstered their squad by bringing in Manchester City pairing Wade Joyce and Ellis Plummer, and both are expected to be in Johnson’s squad this weekend.

Defender Plummer, 19, has not made a first-team appearance in a City shirt as yet, but that has not prevented him catching the eye of England under-17 head coaches John Peacock and Kenny Swain in recent years.

Johnson also admits to being a long-term admirer of the Audenshaw left-footer.

“I’ve watched Ellis quite a few times,” said the Latics manager.

“He’s very athletic, very powerful and I’m looking forward to working with him.”

Image courtesy of Sky News via YouTube, with thanks.

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