EDDIE Johnson has spoken of his relief at finally signing for Chester City – ending more than two months of uncertainty and frustration.
The 24-year-old has been training with the Blues since early August but has had to wait patiently while the club got the finances in place to sign him on a two-year deal.
Chester-born Johnson, who comes from a family of Blues fans, is desperate to make up for lost time and has declared himself fit and ready for this Sunday’s Deva Stadium derby with Port Vale.
He said: “It’s been a long time coming. At first I thought it was only going to be a couple of weeks before I signed, but then I was told it was going to be around October time.
“It’s been difficult and frustrating sometimes, but it’s finally come now and I’m just delighted and I’m hoping to be involved on Sunday.”
Johnson, a free agent since leaving Bradford City at the end of last season, hopes to play some part against Port Vale despite being short of full match fitness. He has played only a couple of behind-closed-doors friendly fixtures this season.
“The manager’s not named the team for Sunday yet so I’m just going to wait and see if I play,” said the former Manchester United and Crewe Alexandra man.
“Just to be involved and to be eligible to play is a big relief off my shoulders.
“Going to watch the lads every week has been difficult when you just want to be on the pitch playing.
“It’s over now and I just want to concentrate on doing my best.
“I feel like my fitness is all right. I’ve trained with the lads now for two months and done extra bits of running.”
Johnson, who lives in Boughton, admitted that signing for his hometown club was extra special. His brother Tom watches Chester home and away. Dad Dave and grandad Stan are also City fans.
“It’s quite a big deal in my family at the moment and I think I’ll have quite a few people there on Sunday,” said Johnson, who attended Boughton Heath Primary School before going on to Bishops’ High.
He began his football career with Newton Athletic and also represented Chester Schools and Cheshire Schools before signing for Crewe.
Johnson wasn’t the only striker to sign for the Blues this week.
City also tempted assistant boss Wayne Allison out of retirement. The veteran hitman, who turned 40 yesterday, is not expected to start many games and will be used sparingly by Davies.
Johnson has been impressed with what he’s seen of ‘the Chief’ in training.
He said: “He’s started joining in with us in the last few weeks since they discussed him signing on as a player. You can see in just the short games we have that he’s still got the ability.”
Chester visit Rochdale on Tuesday (7.45pm) for a League Two clash.
More Blues news – pages 70-71.