Aron Johannsson returned to training with Werder Bremen this week after a lengthy spell on the sidelines. Now with his goal of returning to action within reach, Johannsson is hoping to join fellow American Josh Sargent in the Bremen attacking front.
With Johannsson out of the picture earlier this season, Sargent has been able to earn first-team minutes under Florian Kohfeldt. The 19-year-old has scored twice in the Bundesliga this campaign, making nine appearances since his jump from Bremen’s U-23 side. Even though he’s been on the sidelines, Johannsson has big hopes for the pair and high praise for his American teammate.
“I’m delighted for him,” Johannsson said in an interview with Bundesliga.com. “He’s an unbelievable talent. If he keeps going and doesn’t lose focus he can become a very, very good striker.”
“He’s only 19, but physically he’s more developed that that,” Johannsson continued. “Josh can hold the ball up well and is a killer in front of goal. It’s important that he keeps his feet on the ground, but I’m not worried about him at all. We talk every day and are good friends. He’s just a normal guy. We both have the same aim: one day we want to play together for Bremen and the USA.”
While Sargent has been fighting with several other Bremen forwards for minutes, Johannsson is recovering from an ankle issue which has kept him out since July 2018. Since his move from AZ Alkmaar in August 2015, Johannsson has only made 27 Bundesliga appearances while scoring four goals.
The 28-year-old’s return to training is promising as Bremen continue to fight up the league table. Johannsson has proven the past he can score goals after returning from injury but practice with the U-23’s at first could help him find his groove once again.
“I’d waited so long to return so when I was actually out there again, it was indescribable,” Johannsson said in an interview with Bild. “I’m just so happy to be able to play football again. My foot still stiffens up sometimes, but I wouldn’t call it painful. I’ve trained a lot recently, doing two sessions per six days a week. I’m well prepared. The plan is for me to take part in full training regularly in a couple of weeks.”
“I’ve often showed that I can return from a long injury and score goals,” Johannsson said. “But obviously it would also be beneficial for me to get some match practice in the U-23’s.”
The pair has 25 caps between them, with Johannsson scoring four goals in his 19 and Sargent bagging two in his six. However, Johannsson and Sargent have yet to play together with the USMNT but could see that change in the future under new head coach Gregg Berhalter.
Bremen gets back to league play on Saturday against Wolfsburg.