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Kick off 12:45 (UK)

1-1
30 March 2018 Venue The Kassam Stadium Attendance

Kick off 12:45 (UK)

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	English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

PREVIEW Oxford United v Scunthorpe United

A full guide to Good Friday's Sky Bet League 1 game at the Kassam Stadium

29 March 2018

Karl Robinson takes charge at home for the first time against play-off chasing Scunthorpe, who themselves had a change of

TEAM NEWS

United welcome back Joe Rothwell after injury plus Isaac Buckley-Ricketts and Canice Carroll after their international call ups. Rothwell made a cameo appearance as a sub at Portsmouth last week and Robinson must decide between him and Josh Ruffels to replace the suspended Alex Mowatt.

Gino van Kessel picked up a hamstring injury while away with Curacao and will be unavalable while Rob Hall and Curtis Nelson remain sidelined with longer term injuries.

See Karl Robinson and Joe Rothwell previewing the game, all in iFollow right now.

TICKETS

Tickets are on sale online at www.oufctickets.co.uk 24/7 and from the ticket office in person and by phone (01865 337533).

THE PROGRAMME

The award winning matchday programme features the thoughts of Tiger and Karl and Curtis Nelson plus a great interview with Malachi Napa and guest of honour Peter Hucker. We also go On the Road to Northampton and we have news and views from all areas of the club. Remember, you can always read the programme on your phone, tablet or laptop. Each issue is available at matchdayfix.com/oufc/

DOUBLE HEADER

Don't forget that United's youth team also play at the Kassam Stadium this weekend. The under 18s are at home to Luton Town in the Southern League Cup Final on Saturday with kick off at 11am. See coach Leon Blackmore-Such talking about the game in this week's Preview Show in iFollow.

FOLLOW IT LIVE

iFollow has the whole game live - hear it if you are in the UK, see it if abroad. You can sign up game by game or for the whole season, and we have full 90 minute reruns of every game.

@OUFCOfficial will be tweeting throughout the game and the match centre on this site gives you full stats and text commentary throughout the match. 

The official report goes live with a full gallery right here on the final whistle.

 HALF TIME

The JT's Golden Ticket half time draw offers a first prize of up to £750. Second prize is a £100 voucher for the Oxford United club shop, while third prize is a VIP package at JT’s Cocktail Bar.

Look out too for the Racehut Challenge at half time.

GETTING HERE

Parking

  • East Stand car park - this will open to supporters ahead of the Forum
  • A car park steward will count vehicles in and the car park will be closed when it is full.
  • Another car park steward will direct drivers to a bay to ensure spaces are filled up systematically; drivers are no longer allowed to park outside of the marked bays.
  • A tweet will go out from @OUFCOfficial to update supporters when the car park is full to allow them to make alternative arrangements.

Additional parking is available on Grenoble Road and in Sandford on Thames.

CLUB SHOP

The club shop has a training kit sale now on. Call in before or after the game or visit oufcshop.co.uk

FAMILY ROOM

The Family Room is open to young fans from all stands. There are games and activities for all ages plus visits from first team players. Join the fun in the corner of the East and North stands from 11.30pm.

 

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Match Reports

REPORT Oxford United 1 Scunthorpe United 1

Henry on the spot as U's hit back for a draw. Full time report

30 March 2018

Karl Robinson's first home game in charge of the U's ended in a 1-1 draw this afternoon as his side picked up a point against Scunthorpe. Trailing to Ivan Toney's opener in the first half United dragged themselves back into the game through a James Henry penalty in a much improved second half to earn Robinson his first draw as Manager.

United were desperately unlucky not to take an early lead in the sixth minute when Todd Kane slipped a superb pass behind the defence for Wes Thomas to run on to. United’s top scorer held off a defender and got his shot on target but keeper Matt Gilks was equal to it and somehow got down to his left to push it round the post. That proved to be their best chance of the first half as Scunthorpe ran the show.

Having sacked Graham Alexander earlier in the week the away side maybe had a point to prove and had already three early efforts go close without troubling Simon Eastwood before they were ahead after 12 minuteswith their first effort on target. Hakeeb Adelakun created it with a strong run into the box and a powerful low effort that Eastwood got down well to push out, but the ball cannoned back to hit the onrushing Toney and sneak inside the near post to give Scunthorpe the lead.

Adelakun sliced another good chance over on 19 minutes, Josh Morris tested Eastwood’s handling on 22 and the lively Duane Holmes smacked a 24th minute effort against the base of the left hand post as the visitors created the best opportunities: Henry also cleared one off the line from a corner with the forearm part of his chest and Rob Dickie had to smash a Jordan Clarke header off the line as the Iron showed more steel for 45 minutes. Murray Wallace drilled wide when he had the freedom of the penalty area just before the break and United were fortunate to only be a goal behind at that stage.

Scunthorpe may not be a place full of swimming pools and movie stars but over the last decade or so they have constantly produced good teams who play decent football and are always around the play-off places, and this season they have been in that top group throughout. Holmes, Morris and Toney caught the eye going forward but they were also well organised at the back , hard working across midfield, and United struggled to make an impression before the break despite the return to the starting eleven of the creative Joe Rothwell.

However after the break it was a completely different story.

Resisting the urge to make changes at the break Robinson gave the same eleven a chance to step things up and Henry curled an early effort into the arms of Gilks but when the change did come it proved inspired. Jon Obika, on for Wes Thomas, had only just been introduced when he popped up on the left side of the box and bore down on goal. Clarke bundled him over and United had a priceless penalty. Up stepped Henry to wrong foot Gilks and United were on level terms again from a textbook penalty: no goading, no slapping, just a goal to set them moving forward.

Scunthorpe were still committed to attack but United were now pushing more men forward and the game was far more end to end. Adelakun curled an effort against the bar on 63 but there were loud shouts for handball at the other end two minutes later as Obika again made a nuisance of himself inside the box.

In driving rain both sides went for the win rather than settle for a point with United's midfield now on top and Scunthorpe looking to get in behind them as the U's left gaps. There weren't too many clear chances but the home defence had tightened up and there had been plenty of encouraging elements that Robinson can work with as he stamps his mark on this side. They might even have won it in injury time when Ruffels burst into the box put put the last chance of the game too close to Gilks.

Scunthorpe will be frustrated not to have earned more from their first half display but the U's had shown resolve and deserved their point on character alone. 

Att: 7,479

Away: 268

Report by Chris Williams, pictures by Steve Daniels, Stats by OPTA

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