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Johnson signs

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The deal that many expected was finally confirmed just before the transfer deadline this afternoon as we landed Adam Johnson for an undisclosed fee:
The Club is delighted to announce that Adam Johnson has joined us from Middlesbrough for an undisclosed fee after agreeing terms and passing a medical this afternoon.

The former England Under-21 winger, who has signed a contract until June 2014, steps straight into Roberto Mancini's squad against Hull on Saturday. He will wear the traditional No.11.

Johnson, who played 19 games for England Under-21s and scored four goals, has played 96 times for Boro, scoring 13 times and making a firm impression on the game's shrewdest judges.

Although it was confirmed as an undisclosed fee, the MEN are suggesting it is in the region of an initial £6million, rising to £10 million with add-ons. Although Johnson was out of contract in the summer, given his age (meaning we would have had to have paid a compensatory figure anyway) and undoubted potential it is a fair figure.

I am excited about the move. Johnson is very highly thought of in the game and impressed in our FA Cup meeting before being forced off through injury. He had his path blocked a little by Stewart Downing early in his career and spent time on loan at both Leeds and Watford but returned for the 2008/09 season where he made twenty-six appearances in Middlesbrough's relegation campaign.

Interestingly enough, Johnson has often featured on the right wing (or 'off-wing') - something that Mancini (amongst many others at the moment) is fond of utilising and far from him being banished to the reserves my view is that he will see plenty of playing time over the remainder of the season.

A further point to consider is the potential effect this could have on Martin Petrov's future. Out of contract in the summer of course, he has often been linked with moves away from the club (with rumours today of a move to Everton) and perhaps this signing pushes the Bulgarian closer to the exit door?