LEE JOHNSON is convinced there is plenty of magic still to come from Aiden McGeady at Sunderland.

The veteran winger, 35, earned the Black Cats a point with a free-kick his manager admitted was better than his overall performance at Peterborough.

Johnson reinstated the Republic of Ireland midfielder on succeeding Phil Parkinson at the Stadium of Light - and reckoned that previous unwanted idleness would help extend his career.

“He wasn’t having his best game, partly due to the pitch, partly due to their good defending, but you leave him on because you know he has that in his locker,” Johnson said.

“I felt that if he beat the wall there would be a decent chance. I see him do it regularly in training and if you wanted to place it for a McGeady free-kick that’s where you would put it. I did believe in him and he produced.

“I wasn’t tempted to leave him out because of two games in four days and the pitch here. He’s had his rest in the period before I came in!

“He’s a winner who wants to influence things and I think he’s got a couple of years playing in him. He’s as fit as a fiddle and as quick as anyone in a ten-yard race.”

The Black Cats remain in third, two points behind Posh with a game in hand. Portsmouth are seven points adrift in fourth but Johnson insisted it was not necessarily a three-horse race for the two automatic slots.

“I still feel there is the potential for somebody to go on a run,” he said. “I was in a Watford squad that was down in 14th with ten games to go and won ten on the spin to get promoted.

“We have got really tough games moving into the last eight and we have got to try to win them all.”

Sunderland return to action when they host seventh-placed Charlton Athletic at the Stadium of Light on Saturday, and still have to face leaders Hull as well we playing two games against fifth-placed Blackpool.