Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 5/26/13
Liverpool defender Glen Johnson has declared his pleasure with a Barclays Premier League campaign which saw the 28-year-old miss a mere two matches. The No. 2 featured in 36 of the Reds’ 38 league encounters during 2012-13, handsomely beating his previous highest record of 28 appearances. It’s a result which has provided the right-back with confidence as he switches focus to international duty during the summer. “I only missed two games in the Premier League this year and that’s nice,” Johnson said. ”Most people say I’m hitting that age where I should be at my prime so I am pleased with how things are going.” Roy Hodgson‘s England team face the Republic of Ireland on Wednesday before a landmark meeting with 2014 FIFA World Cup hosts Brazil next Sunday. Johnson is joined by club teammate Daniel Sturridge in the Three Lions squad and is relishing the opportunity to play at the famous Maracana Stadium. “I can guarantee that there aren’t many players in that squad who have played in that stadium so I am sure that the lads will be looking forward to it,” he added. “It will be nice to have it on the CV, definitely. I would say Brazil are the most romantic of teams, purely for variety. They could play their third team and still be very competitive in each major tournament. They have got some unbelievable players. Some players don’t stay around as long as they should do, but the next one that steps in will be just as good so they are always fun to watch.” The showpiece friendly represents an interim challenge before World Cup qualification resumes in September — and the defender is determined to help his country progress further. “With the squad we have got we can definitely do better in a major tournament. In each game there are tiny little elements that decide each game,” Johnson said. “A matter of inches can determine if you win, but ratio-wise we have been generally going out around the quarter-final stages so you certainly do want to improve on that.”

This article first appeared on NESN.com and was syndicated with permission.

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