Johnson brings experience as former English youth international

Austin Aztex News Release – www.austinaztex.com

Thursday, March 5, 2009

AUSTIN, TX — The Austin Aztex announced the signing of English midfielder-forward Eddie Johnson. The 24-year-old Johnson comes to the United States after a successful career in England, which included stints on the U16-U20 English national teams as well as his first professional job with Manchester United.

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Johnson saw his first action in preseason against New EnglandA 17-year-old signing at Manchester United in 2001, Johnson saw action in one game for the Red Devils, a 3-2 victory against Leeds in 2003.

United loaned Johnson to the Belgian club Royal Antwerp in January 2004 where he made 11 appearances, scoring five goals.

In July 2004, Johnson went on loan to Championship side Coventry City for the 2004–05 season where he gained valuable first-team experience. He scored in his Coventry debut, a 2–0 victory against Sunderland, before he scored a second later that month in a 4–1 defeat of Nottingham Forest.

It was at Coventry City where Johnson first encountered Austin Aztex head coach Adrian Heath, who was an assistant coach at the time.

“I was incredibly impressed with his attitude and his determination to do the job that the coach was asking of him at the time, which sometimes meant playing in positions that were foreign to him,” Heath recalled.

Several years later, including stops at Crewe Alexandra and Bradford City, Johnson and Heath have reunited in Austin. Heath said it was an easy decision bringing Johnson to Texas.

“I feel that he is the type of player that will have an influence on the team. I think it’s fair to say that Eddie has lost his way recently and I hope we can get him back on the right path to where he is again one of the bright young players in English football.”

For Johnson, he is grateful for the opportunity to play in the States with Heath.

“I look forward to trying and score as many goals as possible and repay the manager for the faith he has put in me.”

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