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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

1-2
05 April 2021 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 Accrington Stanley

A full guide to Easter Monday's game at the Kassam Stadium

4 April 2021

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Oxford United welcome Accrington Stanley to the Kassam Stadium on Monday (3pm)

The U's look to bounce back after defeat at Sunderland as they push to close the gap on the play-off places.

TEAM NEWS
The U's will be without the suspended Mark Sykes who sits the game out thanks to an automatic one game ban after his sending off at Sunderland.

However Manager Karl Robinson can watch the game from the touchline despite also being shown a red card at the Stadium of Light. Any disciplinary action against the Manager takes a little longer to come through.

Sam Long is hoping to be involved after an ear infection ruled him out at Sunderland while defender Luke McNally made his first appearance on the bench at the weekend. First year scholar Ben Watt, a right back who joined the club from the Spurs Academy was 19th man on Saturday and will be part of the squad against on Monday.

THE OPPOSITION
Accrington drew 0-0 at home to fast-improving Burton Abion on Saturday, a result which leaves John Coleman's side in 13th place in the table

It was a good reaction after Stanley were beaten 7-0 at Peterborough the week before in their last away game although that result was masked by an injury crisis at the Wham Stadium which saw several senior players missing and defender Mark Hughes subsequently ruled out for the season.

“I can’t ever remember an injury crisis like this in almost 25 years as a manager” Coleman said.

MATCH SPONSORS
Our thanks to Bicester Hotel Golf and Spa who are sponsoring the matchFind out all about them HERE

COVERAGE
Season Ticket holders can watch the game on iFollow as usual and match passes are available to see the full game live with commentary from our friends at BBC Oxford Sport

We have all the build up on twitter and on our official Insta page, complete with behind the scenes exclusive content, plus a full report and Gallery right here on the final whistle and reaction from all the key men in iFollow.

Join us on the official YouTube channel for 'Matchday Live', available to help you get in to matchday mode from 2.15pm.

 

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Match Reports

REPORT Oxford United 1 Accrington Stanley 2

U's lose to Stanley. Full time report

5 April 2021

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Oxford United were beaten 2-1 by Accrington Stanley this afternoon at the Kassam Stadium. Having hit back through Elliot Lee after a Paul Smyth opener, United were beaten when defender Michael Nottingham fired home a second-half winner to make it back-to-back defeats at Easter for the U's.

United welcomed Sam Long back into the side at right back, with Jamie Hanson continuing on the left of defence and Lee returning in midfield. They started well enough, but Stanley then enjoyed a period of sustained pressure after about 15 minutes, with a strong wind at their back pushing them forward for much of the first half.

Smyth had the first clear chance, forcing Jack Stevens into a good save after 13 minutes. The corner was knocked over the line but not given, so we’ll draw a veil over that moment but it mattered little; a minute later Smyth let fly from 20 yards out and United were a goal down anyway. 050421 accrington (13).jpg

Accrington continued to press and Stevens patted away a Matt Butcher effort, but what United needed was one opportunity at the other end to get back into the game.

They got that on 24 and owed plenty to Matty Taylor’s awareness, protecting the ball inside the penalty area and teeing up Lee who took a touch then made the finish look simple with a calm pass beyond keeper Toby Savin for 1-1.

050421 accrington (18).jpg

Most of the savin continued at the other end though, with Stevens pushing a McConville effort on to the post soon after and Stanley having seven shots on target to United’s one in the first half, a statistic which would have been largely irrelevant had Taylor steered a final effort inside rather than outside the back post in injury time.

Accrington's grievances continued when Long blatantly punched a cross away ten minutes into the second half but was ruled to have been shoved, raising his arm involuntarily as a result, but they had a great chance to regain the lead when Dion Charles rounded Stevens but couldn't beat the covering Mide Shodipo.

United then started to enjoy much more of the ball and went close when a clever turn from Lee led to a chance which he curled over the top on 58 minutes. The on-loan Luton man went even closer on 61, with Savin saving his low drive just inside the near post, and the keeper made his best save from a Shodipo effort on 68 as United turned up the heat.

Almost inevitably, just as they looked to be retreating the visitors retook the lead. It wasn't a case of being opened up by a flowing move, it was a set piece into the box, headed half clear but returned and headed on and Nottingham in the right place to power the ball beyond the helpless Stevens to make it 1-2 with 20 minutes to go.

Elliott Moore saw an effort blocked, Barker powered another wide of the far post but United just couldn't find top gear all afternoon despite plenty of honest endeavour.

Back-to-back defeats at just the wrong time. Still seven games to go, but if the U's are going to get to the play-offs then they need to make their move quickly now, starting at Crewe next Saturday.

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

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