Date:Sunday July 29 2007
The Alex were today linked with a £100,000 bid for Wolverhampton Wanderers striker Jemal Johnson. If reports are correct then Johnson could prove to be a big signing next season.
The 22 year old striker is a USA national but arrived in Britain when his parents moved from New Jersey, USA to Macclesfield in Cheshire when he was just five years old. He spent most of his young career in the Manchester United academy before making the switch to Blackburn Rovers at the age of 16.
Johnson made his Blackburn debut at 19 when he made a brief appearance at the end of an FA Cup tie against Cardiff in January 2005. He followed it up with a league substitute appearance against Bolton in the same month before he made his first start in the FA Cup against Colchester. It was against Colchester he scored his first professional goal, in a 3-0 win.
Jemal made a further three appearances for Blackburn that season and even started 05/06 off in the Rovers first team, however his lack of experience showed and Mark Hughes looked to allow the youngster out on loan. He spent three games on loan at Preston North End in November 2005, scoring once against Hull, before moving north to Darlington where he finally pinned down regular football for the final couple of months of the 05/06 season.
Johnson played nine games for Darlo, scoring three goals - including a double over Lincoln City. Jemal impressed enough though and in August 2006 was subject to a move to Wolves for an undisclosed fee, and immediately hit it off at the Molineux.
Two winning goals in his first two league games for Wanderers made him a fans favourite instantly; but just one goal in the 24 appearances that followed dampened early excitement and after a reported spat with a fellow team mate Johnson was transfer listed.
Jemal spent the final three months of last season on loan at disastrous Leeds United, but, like many before him, he failed to save them from the inevitable.
Still at Wolves, this summer he's been in the transfer gossip columns without anything materialising; a season long loan move to Coventry City was reportedly on the cards.
Johnson is described as a fairly tall striker with pace to burn, and plenty of tricks to show. In his short career he's scored a couple of stunning goals too.
A young player with pedigree could be perfect to fill the hole Luke Varney left this summer.
Date:Sunday July 29 2007
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