The Official Online RBS 6 Nations Store is open. The store has everything you need to get behind your team during the RBS 6 Nations, plus the store is now fully stocked with a much wider range of rugby merchandise.
Scotland and the Azzurri have finished as the bottom two sides in each of the past five campaigns but Italy are already off the mark this year after defeating France in Rome.
Conversely Johnson’s side opened with a defeat – losing 38-18 to England at Twickenham – and will face Italy with last season’s 13-6 loss at the Stadio Olimpico still fresh in their finds.
And while Johnson admits the pressure will be on his side at Murrayfield, the former Ospreys coach has warned victory at home to Italy is no longer a formality.
“We’re deluding ourselves to think that the world order hasn’t changed,” he said. “In the last ten years Italy has improved as a rugby nation.
“Was it [victory over France] a shock? No, it wasn’t a shock. If you look at their autumn form they did really well against Australia and New Zealand.
“They didn’t get a win but they were very competitive in areas of the games. And sometimes you get the French in a great mood and sometimes slightly off, but that Italian side’s a very, very good side.
“They’re a combative side. They’ll want to turn up here and be combative. So do we. If you look at the last 15 months they’ve played a more expansive game, so they’ve got the ability to be a bit more potent than they have been in previous years.
“Listen, they can target whoever they like. We’re targeting them too. It’s the way it is. But trust me we’ll be walking towards the pressure not away from it.”