Danny Johnson

It didn’t occur to me during the Hartlepool game (I was too involved in jumping up and down as the goals went in), but looking at the highlights two significant aspects of Danny’s performance stood out like the proverbial sore thumb…

  1. All three of his goals were scored with his left foot - how long has it been since we had a goalscorer who seems to be a natural left-footer? I can’t think of any, and I’m going back to the glory days of Tony Richards. I suppose you could say that Colin “cannonball” Taylor was in that category, but he was primarily a left-winger rather than a striker.

  2. All three of his goals were scored from “first time” efforts. He didn’t need to waste time dithering about setting his shot up, he just lamped the ball immediately on receiving it - the action of a natural striker.

None of this has any real relevance, but it certainly whets the appetite in anticipation of future games!!



When Wilko returns we will have 2 left footed strikers thats a rarity in its self. That’s if we sign Johnson permanently of course.

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I said this at the time, we’re finally willing to shoot instead of one pass too many.


Oztumer. Before that Junior. In the 90s Kyle.


That was the thing I immediately noticed about him in the Solihull game - first time the ball came to him in the box, trapped with his right foot, immediate snapshot with his left.

I’ve long been screaming “Just bloody hit it!” at a succession of strikers who think they have to have half a dozen touches first, or you can see the cogs whirring as they are making up their minds what to do next and let a defender get across and block (Flash was a bugger for that).

Not just the strikers - having to beat 2 or 3 already beaten defenders when the shot/pass was on to start with (and then go backwards because the opportunity has now gone) seemed to be standard from all our players. So on Saturday the mostly 1 and 2 touch stuff that kept the ball moving (with purpose rather than just for the sake of it) and made the opposition dizzy was a refreshing change and a joy to behold.

We’ll meet better opponents than Hartlepool over the next 45 games, and we haven’t seen them against a team of cloggers on a mudbath of a pitch on a wet Tuesday night, but if they can maintain that style of football with the same levels of skill and work rate then I’m sure we will be clapping them for being entertaining even if we lose. That’s what we’ve been missing since Deano (on a regular basis at least).


I think we are all pleased about this in a player for once. His second goal in particular impressed me and his third he read the knockdown instinctively from Monthe.


He was also behind his marker when Monthe nodded down.

That was the problem with Miller. When he was in the box the ball would often fall to his feet in just the wrong place. He would have to adjust to hit it.

Early days, I know, but Saturday was a bit like the Bradshaw days. You just knew DJ was going to score.

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In the same vein, that was my point about Comley’s goal. How many times in the past have we seen the ball squirt out of the box to a midfielder who comes onto the loose ball all wrong so they can’t get a shot away and have to take a touch or 3, or wang it high, wide and mighty? Anticipating the trajectory of the ball and getting your body shape right increases your chances of being able to fire off a few more first time shots with a bit of accuracy.


The the thing that sets Johnson apart from any of our recent signings over the past few seasons is his understanding and anticipation of where the ball will be. It’s not really something that you can coach into a player or get him to do, it’s just a natural instinct that very few players have. Johnson is one of those.

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That’s what I mean reading of the game

I think what Johnson benefitted from, and the likes of Williams, James Taylor and Abraham will is having more than one player in the box. In the recent past we’ve had one player in the opposition penalty area that it’s taken a pin point delivery and the perfect run to even have a chance of getting on the end of a cross

Now that we have two, three, sometimes four players looking to get in the end of something, it’s no wonder more seemed to fall to a red shirt on Saturday


Miller isn’t a patch on this lad i know it’s only one game but if Johnson stays fit I’d bet my house he will bag more than Miller this season that second goal would have been in row z or hit the corner flag if that was Miller.

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I remember someone on here about three weeks ago saying that since we have been in League 2, we haven’t had a proper goal scorer. And with us being generally poor at home, i had a look at the number of goals scored each season at home by strikers in a Walsall shirt.


Danny Johnson - 3 (after one game)


Conor Wilkinson - 8
George Miller - 6
Kieran Phillips - 3
Devante Rodney - 0


Elijah Adebayo - 3
Josh Gordon - 0
Caolan Lavery - 1
Jake Scrimshaw - 2
Adan George - 0
Jayden Reid - 0
Derrick Osei-Yaw - 0


Rory Gaffney - 0
Elijah Adebayo - 5
Josh Gordon - 6
Caolan Lavery - 2

I mentioned in pre season that all we were missing was a striker who had abit of instinct and it looks like we’ve certainly got one :grinning:

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A sentence which I thought I would never see in my remaining lifetime!
Really though we were stuck in a never ending circle of acceptance of failure as the norm.


Yes, I sort of got that impression on the basis of your last 5000 posts :grin: