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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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16 February 2019 Venue The Kassam Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

PREVIEW Oxford United v Peterborough United

Full match pack as the U's take on the Posh at the Kassam Stadium

15 February 2019

Oxford United welcome Peterborough United to the Kassam Stadium on Saturday.

TEAM NEWS
United boss Karl Robinson has an interesting choice to make up front where Jerome Sinclair and Jamie Mackie are competing for the lone striker position. Karl suggested last week that the pair would alternate, depending on the strengths of the opposition, but the other option is to play both and change shape slightly.

Samir Carruthers may have played his way in to contention for a starting place with a superb performance in the Under 23s' win over Hull City in midweek, while Jonte Smith scored again and could step up to the bench, although Marcus Browne will be hoping that his goal last week against Sunderland lifts him from bench to starting eleven.

Mark Sykes is the one doubt with a knee injury after he collided with the post in training last week.

See Karl Robinson and Cameron Brannagan previewing the game in iFollow right now.

The Programme

The Programme

The Opposition

Three wins in 16 games mean that Darren Ferguson's team has slipped from their place in the automatic promotion places. “I won’t care if we win 1-0 after the scrappiest game imaginable,” Ferguson said this week. “We just need to pick up three points any way we can.

“The run we are on is obviously not good enough and understandably the players are low on confidence.

“But momentum can change quickly and we’ve concentrated on the positives from the last two games even though we’ve lost them both (home to Plymouth, away to Doncaster). There were mitigating circumstances with a red card in the first-half in both games and I honestly believe we would have won them both playing 11 v 11.

“We have 14 games to go and we will probably need to win more than half of them. It’s difficult to predict exactly - we went down with 54 points once - but that’s what we must aim for. If we can get the level of performance right and have some luck along the way we can do it. I’ve been in this position many times and there are alaways twists and turns.

Match Day
The RES gate behind the North Stand will not be in operation for this game, meaning that fans can move from one end of the stadium to the other behind that stand.

Getting Here
For a full guide to transport options, parking and buses CLICK HERE

Away Fans

If you are a Peterborough fan travelling to the game then a full Supporters Guide is available here: OUFCAwayDayInfo.pdf 

Family
Oxford United pride ourselves on providing a great atmosphere for families to enjoy. We have a full Family Guide to games available here: OUFC Family Guide

Coverage

iFollow is available with the full game LIVE to hear in the UK and see overseas.There will be reaction from the key men after the game, and you can follow all the action on Twitter at @OUFCOfficial and on this site with a match report right on the final whistle.

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Match Reports

REPORT Oxford United 0 Peterborough United 1

Toney goal sinks the U's. Full time report

16 February 2019

An Ivan Toney goal in the second half was enough to earn Peterborough United all three points at the Kassam Stadium this afternoon. In the tightest of games a precise finish from Toney was enough to push Peterborough back towards the play-offs while ending United's five game unbeaten run.

United, kicking towards the fence end in the first half, were fortunate to see a Jason Naismith blast come back off the post in the fourth minute as the visitors started strongly, forcing two early corners and pushing the U’s back but then the Yellows started to grow in to the game and went close after 10 minutes when a fine passing move ended with the influential Cameron Brannagan firing inches wide from the edge of the box.

United have pace up front and Jerome Sinclair, preferred to Jamie Mackie up front, stretched the game down the middle forcing Peterborough’s back line a couple of yards deeper and allowing James Henry some space to work in between the defensive lines, while Gavin Whyte was a thorn in the Posh side all afternoon down the right. Henry fired a free kick into the wall and shouldered a header goalwards on 27 but neither keeper truly had a save to make in the first half hour despite some neat approach play from both teams

The game then opened up for fifteen minutes with the dangerous Toney wasting Posh’s best chance of the first half by heading meekly wide when unmarked after 38 minutes and Ruffels fluffing his lines by volleying over on 44. Brannagan drew a good save from Conor O’Malley with a powerful effort on 45 and the balance of play had been with United in the opening, goalless, period.

Peterborough had a George Cooper free kick go wide in the opening exchanges of the second half but the game got bogged down on a difficult worn playing surface and when Whyte fizzed a cross towards Henry on 59 minutes it bobbled over the top scorer's boot when the goal appeared to be at his mercy.

The ever-eager Jamie Hanson tested O'Malley's handling with a low drive on 62 and Jordan Graham's trickery was a constant outlet on the left but there still weren't too many clear cut chances and Jamie Mackie and Marcus Browne were thrown on for the last 20 minutes to try and crack a particularly determined Peterborough back line.

The threat all game came from the creativity of Marcus Maddison and the power of Toney and on 76 it was that combination that decided the match. Awarded a free kick on the right, Maddison fooled everyone by looking towards the back post but then sliding the ball down the right channel instead for the unmarked Toney. From an acute angle Toney took precise aim and fired across Eastwood to win the game with his 19th goal of the season.

A touch harsh on United, who had matched their promotion-chasing visitors for most of the game and now had to scramble to try and salvage even a point, not helped by playing the last few minutes a man light after Whyte took a blow to the head when bravely closing down a defender.

That didn't dampen the enthusiasm or stop United giving it their all in pursuit of an equaliser - even Eastwood went up for a last-minute corner - but the Posh had just a little bit too much for them and a first home defeat of 2019 ended with the U's dropping a place into the relegation zone. They undoubtedly have the ability to get themselves out of trouble and have had a tricky run of games that have seen them face four of the top seven at home in recent weeks, but the time for promise is gone. Time to start delivering.

Att: 6,451

Away: 490

Report by Chris Williams. Pictures by Steve Daniels, stats by OPTA

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