Johnson winning fitness fight

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Key Birmingham defender Roger Johnson is set to return to training on Thursday and should be fit for Saturday's crucial relegation clash with Sunderland.

Johnson suffered concussion and had to be substituted at half-time during last weekend's 1-1 draw at Blackburn. But the former Cardiff player made City boss Alex McLeish aware as early as Monday that he was determined to face the Black Cats.

McLeish said: "Roger has made some improvement. He has not trained this week but we expect him to train today and he should be ready."

He added: "He was a bit groggy but it would take something really bad to stop him playing. That's the sort of guy he is.

"He texted me on Monday and said 'I've got a bit of a headache but I'll be okay for the weekend'."


Birmingham's lengthy injury list is only showing signs of slightly improving with Obafemi Martins (groin) and Martin Jiranek (toe) still doubtful.

But City's performances in taking four points from the last two games with Bolton and Blackburn have eased McLeish's worries about who might be available.

He said: "Nikola Zigic, Obafemi Martins and Martin Jiranek are still on the treatment table.

"Zigic is showing a slight improvement, the other two are not quite ready. We will hedge our bets on Zigic.

"David Bentley (groin) has joined the group again. Jean Beausejour had a bit of a hamstring last week. He is going to be training again over the next couple of days."

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Roger Johnson
Premier League

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