Tony Mowbray believes Blackburn Rovers have signed a potential diamond in Bradley Johnson from Derby County, Rovers.co.uk report.
He knows quite a few of the lads, he’s very close with Elliott and if his character is up there like Elliott Bennett’s – the personality that he brings to his work – then we’ve got ourselves a real diamond. I’m looking forward to working with him.
Blackburn completed the signing of Johnson last week. The 32-year-old put pen-to-paper on a two-year deal.
His situation at Derby this summer was quite strange. After signing for the Rams from Norwich City for a then club record fee in 2015, it was suggested he was approaching the end of his four-year deal.
Derby, however, announced Johnson on their retained list. The Derby Telegraph reported how Johnson had previously signed a one-year extension last year, but he was in talks with the club over a new deal.
The former Norwich ace was then omitted from the squad to travel to Florida for a pre-season tour. A few days later, Blackburn announced they had signed him much to the surprise of the Rams supporters.
Will Derby County miss Bradley Johnson?
Johnson was in and out of the team under Frank Lampard last season. However, he became the club’s number one holding midfielder for the final two months of the season.
Johnson impressed as Derby reached the playoff final, helping the East Midlands side beat the likes of Bristol City, West Bromwich Albion and Leeds United before coming up short at Wembley.
Many supporters felt the physical midfielder had done enough to warrant a further extension. Yet, the club’s possession-based playing style has never suited Johnson, and he may have better luck at Blackburn.
Tony Mowbray’s side are physical. They are often direct. Rovers enjoyed a successful midtable spot in the Championship last season, and they could challenge for the playoffs this time around.