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Kick off 19:45 (UK)

29 December 2021 Venue The Kassam Stadium Attendance

Kick off 19:45 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

PREVIEW Oxford United v AFC Wimbledon

U's look to end 2021 with a win against Wimbledon

29 December 2021

Sponsored by

Oxford United welcome AFC Wimbledon to the Kassam Stadium this evening in Sky Bet League 1 (7.45pm)

A number of games elsewhere have been postponed due to covid numbers but tonight's game is due to go ahead and United will welcome back a number of players who were ruled out of their last game against Wigan.

Herbie Kane, Cameron Brannagan, Luke McNally and Sam Winnall were all unavailable after testing positive but have completed their 'return to play' protocols and should be available, as will Jordan Thorniley after serving a one game suspension.

However, James Henry misses the game with a calf injury suffered in the warm up against Wigan. Henry is likely to miss another three weeks.

See Karl and Matty Taylor previewing the game in iFollow.

Striker Ollie Palmer returns after injury but Ayoub Assal tested positive and misses out while Dan Csoka faces a late fitness test.

Assistant Manager Rob Tuvey believes that flexibility is the key for the Dons.

“What we have worked on is our formation and flexibility. We’ve shown that throughout the season that we can play different shapes at times and that within games we can change shape and really cause teams problems. It’s something we’ve worked hard on going into Oxford. We’ll make sure that whatever formation we go with, we’re well prepared.”

“I thought the last game (against Oxford) was an absolutely fantastic spectacle for League One,” he said. “Anyone in the stadium that day wouldn’t have thought they were watching a game at that level. The tempo and the pace of the game was a credit to both sides.

“Every time we come up against Oxford, we know that they are a good footballing side. We know the threats that they pose, but the intensity that we’ve got in our play we feel that we can really cause them problems.”

Tickets are available from where you can print at home or download to your phone or you can call 01865 337533
If you are attending then please read the Fan Protocols above.
There are around 2,000 free parking spaces at the stadium but we ask everyone to arrive early and park legally. Away fans - Please park in the West car park - the one closest to the cinema and bowling complex at the fence end of the ground.
Click here for a full away fan guide: 2021 away guide.pdf
The Football Special bus services, including the Didcot/Abingdon service, are running as normal and offer easy and affordable transport to home games. CLICK HERE for a full guide to public transport to the game.
Click here for a full guide to bringing your family to the Kassam Stadium: 2021 family guide.pdf
You can see the whole game in iFollow in the UK and overseas, with interviews with all the key men after the game.
You can also follow the whole game on twitter through @OUFCOfficial or on our Instagram page and we will have a full match report and Gallery right here on the final whistle.

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Match Reports

REPORT Oxford United 3 AFC Wimbledon 0

Super U's end the year in style. Full time report

29 December 2021

Sponsored by

Oxford United ended 2021 with another emphatic victory this evening, turning on the style to beat AFC Wimbledon 3-0 at the Kassam Stadium.

First half goals from Mark Sykes and Matty Taylor were followed by a Sam Long strike in the second half as United left their fans dreaming, perhaps for the first time this season, not of the play-offs but maybe something even greater.

Boss Karl Robinson had the luxury of excess players to choose from, with Jordan Thorniley, Cameron Brannagan and Herbie Kane all returning, although a calf injury kept out James Henry and a positive Covid test ruled out Dan Agyei. No matter who he picks, there is a depth to the squad that is only going to grow over the next month.

Ryan Williams, Man of the Match in the last game against Wigan and Man of the Match again tonight, retained his place and once again showed his versatility as well as his never-to-be disupted work rate. Indeed, Gavin Whyte might have made more of an early cross from him that just eluded the winger inside the six yard box as the U’s took complete control of a very one-sided first half.

Brannagan and Taylor had shots blocked from inside the box, Sykes had two, and Brannagan almost won Goal of the Season with a shot on the turn after Kane had fizzed the ball into him on the edge of the box, all before Sykes put them ahead after 27 minutes with an excellent move that actually took them more than the length of the pitch.

291221 wimbledon (2).jpg

Wimbledon tried to keep the ball in at Simon Eastwood’s end of the pitch (it was a yard out) and United carried the ball all the way to the line at the other end before Williams cut it back and Sykes buried his seventh goal of a very impressive season.

On 38 it was 2-0 and again it came from clever movement on the flanks. This time it was Long then Whyte on the right, and his cross inside the six yard box was met by the sliding Taylor for perhaps the easiest of his 11 goals this season - one more and he draws level with United’s top ten scorers ever in the Football League.

The trust that United have in those around them, knowing they can be trusted to keep the ball or create something in tight spaces, is very easy on the eye and the tenacity with which they try to win it back means they are a nightmare for a team chasing them from two goals down.

Wimbledon's vociferous away fans did their best to lift their team, and for the first 15 minutes of the second half they definitely raised their game, but it was like watching the Barmy Army cheer an Ashes boundary, and even in that time Taylor had a goal chalked off for offside and Brannagan had drawn another save from the overworked Tzanev.

On the hour it was game set and match to Oxford when the superb Long popped up at the far post to slam a volley into the net to make it 3-0 and end Wimbledon's hopes of an unlikely comeback.


The pace, understandably, dropped after that, but United had done their jobs well and move on to 42 point at the halfway mark.

A good win, another clean sheet for Simon Eastwood, whose evening didn't start until he made a decent save on 82 and a second good save in injury time, and another ovation from a satisfied crowd who will be hoping 2022 can kick off in similar style when the U's welcome Cheltenham Town on New Year's Day.

Come and join us.

Att: 7,915
Away: 780

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

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