By Hughie Southon
Ben Johnson made his his 50th top-flight Hammers appearance against Nottingham Forest at the weekend keeping Brennan Johnson quiet at left back in the first half and Morgan Gibbs-White and former Hammer loanee Jesse Lingard at bay from right back in the in the the second.
In the 344 minutes Johnson has been on the pitch in all competitions in 2023, the Irons have yet to concede a goal.
And following the win over the east midlanders Ben is becoming more and more confident that the Hammers will remain in the Premier League this season.
Ben is among those due to renew his contract at the end of the season with the club declaring earlier today that they need to see where they are at the end of the season first,
Commenting on the Forest match to the official site Ben said: “That was much better, and just a lot of relief, a lot of joy, a lot of happiness, not just individually, but collectively for everyone at the Club.
“It’s obviously not easy to take the bad results, so to win emphatically today was just the perfect win and hopefully that gives us some confidence going into United on Wednesday and now the European fixtures are starting again.
“Of course, the most important games and Premier League ones, so we’re just trying to score as many as we can keep as many in as many as we can out but ultimately it’s just a great Saturday, everyone feels good and it’s much deserved for our recent performances.”
Johnson and two-goal full debutant Danny Ings have grown close since the England striker arrived at Rush Green in January, with the No18 taking the defender and midfielder Flynn Downes under his wing.
Ben said: “Danny has taught me so much in a short space of time, just his experience is second to none with the clubs he’s been at and what he’s done and he showed it again .
“So he’s been very good for me and Flynn and we’re just learning from him and he’s been teaching us a couple things, so I’m just buzzing for him.
“We’ve had good conversations and I said he was going to score so it’s perfect when someone goes and does the job and it was what we needed at the right time because the game was going a bit stale.”
Once again young Ben is parachuted in and gives a good account at both full back roles in the same game. He is one solid performer for sure. Surprised though, why was Emerson not featured at all anyone?