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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

12 August 2023 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 Carlisle United

A full guide to the first home game of the season

11 August 2023

Sponsored by

Oxford United get their Sky Bet League 1 home campaign under way when they welcome Carlisle United to the Kassam Stadium on Saturday (3pm)

The U's lost out on the opening day at Cambridge but will be looking to celebrate the first home game of the season with a win.

United have doubts over Cameron Brannagan and Jordan Thorniley who both limped off during the Carabao Cup game at Bristol City on Wednesday.

"We'll wait and see with both of them" Liam Manning told us. "We came in and trained on Thursday, much of it aimed at recovery from the game the night before. Cam and Jordan are in good hands and we'll just see how things settle down on Friday before we make a decision."

Josh McEachran and Marcus Browne were rested in midweek but are expected to be involved while Sam Long, Ruben Rodrigues and Mark Harris will all be hoping for a recall to the starting XI. Harris told iFollow:

"We need a reaction. The two games so far haven't gone how we wanted but we get a chance to put that right on Saturday. We have good players here and we need to show that, starting against Carlisle in front of our own supporters for the first time."

See Liam and Mark talking about the game in iFollow today.

Carlisle United manager Paul Simpson will always be a hero to the Oxford fans who saw him play at the Manor. The former Man City winger was a fine player who scored spectacular goals during his time at the U’s and he is expecting his side to face a stern test as he returns to Oxford on Saturday.

"I think Oxford are a good football team” he said. “They have got a new coach who has gone in there who wants to stamp his own style of play. They want to play like a total football game and they have got good individuals who can do it as well. We have got to be really on our game but it is one that we are really looking forward to. I am hopeful that we can perform to the right levels."

The newly-promoted Cumbrians started the season with a 1-1 draw at home against Fleetwood Town before losing 1-0 to Harrogate Town in the Carabao Cup in midweek.

“It is still early. So I didn’t expect us to be the finished article after two games” Simpson said.”We will improve over the season and we will get better. We will get more understanding as we have a few new players in the group. It is the case of best foot forward and look forward to the next one."

Join us for the big kick off. Tickets are available now from

  • By calling 01865 337533
  • In person from the Kassam Stadium Ticket Office on matchday
There are around 2,000 free parking spaces at the stadium but we ask everyone to arrive early and park legally.

The gate behind the Planet IT North Stand will be in place so pedestrians cannot move from one end of the ground to the other behind that stand
You can download a full guide to visiting the Kassam Stadium here:AwayFanGuide 23 24.pdf
Please park in the West Car Park - the one closest to the cinema and bowling complex at the fence end of the ground.
You can download a full guide to visiting the Kassam Stadium here: DisabledGuide 23 24.pdf
The Club Shop has stock of all three new kits plus a huge range of leisure and training wear. Make sure you call in before the game, or take a look online HERE
The Football Special bus services, including the Didcot/Abingdon service, offer easy and affordable transport to home games and are part of the government's £2 for a ticket scheme. Click HERE for timetables and details.

Our Polythene UK Fifty/50 tickets are available all around the ground and offer a great chance to win cash at half time.

The game is available to hear in the UK and watch worldwide in iFollow.

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 1 Carlisle United 0

Harris goal seals first win. Full time report

12 August 2023

Sponsored by

Oxford United got their season up and running today when a Mark Harris goal earned them a 1-0 win over Carlisle United at the Kassam Stadium.

harris-scores.jpgHarris marked his home debut with a first goal as the patient U's finally found a way through against a stubborn Carlisle defence.

The newly promoted Cumbrians, under the leadership of Manor Legend Paul Simpson, had the first chance of the game when Callum Guy fired wide after five minutes and they proved difficult to break down, especially in an even first half in which United never truly found a spark.

120823 carlisle 1st (2).jpg

Defensively, James Beadle had little to worry him, with Stephan Negru looking very composed on his full home debut in place of the injured Jordan Thorniley, but at the other end of the pitch, Tomas Holy was largely untroubled until the break.

There were some nice touches from Billy Bodin and a couple of runs from Marcus Browne as the U’s looked to stretch the game out wide, but we had to wait for first-half injury time before Cameron Brannagan’s effort from the edge of the area registered as the first shot on target.

The second half was delayed while the ref investigated the state of the net (holey after Holy had vacated), and the best chance thus far came at the far end two minutes later as the industrious Harris intercepted on half way, ran free but lost the shooting chance when he checked back to try and find the right angle to beat Holy. It was a test run for the game's deciding moment.

There was much more intensity after the break, stoked by the home fans raising their voices to try and draw the Yellows towards them. Bodin had two shots, one over the bar the other blocked at source, and the game became entrenched in the Carlisle half of the pitch as Liam Manning's side tried to find that first win. For some reason they seemed reluctant to chance their arm when shooting opportunities came along, but patience is key and a clear opening had to come at some stage.

Bodin floated a free kick over the bar and then that elusive goal chance finally came. Need a spark? Call for Sparky...

Tyler Goodrham clipped a peach of a pass through and Harris was away again. Holy came towards him, but Harris got there first and poked the ball perfectly past him to make it 1-0 and decide the closest of games.


United were in control of the game from then on. Cameron Brannagan might have doubled the lead but saw his drive blocked and a first clean sheet, to go with that first win, made it the perfect home start.

Perhaps not a vintage performance, but United will get better. For now, that first win is all important and at the end of the season nobody will look back at the scoreline and wonder about the way it was achieved. All they will do is see three points on the board and a season under way...

Att: 7,964
Away: 770

Polythene UK Fifty/50 winning number 86285 wins £939.50

Report by Chris Williams, pictures JasonPix

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Ticket News

Football Specials Return on Saturday

Thames Travel on side ahead of first home game

10 August 2023

We are pleased to say that Thames Travel will operate the first Football Specials bus services of the season when the U’s face Carlisle at home on Saturday.

The Football Special services provide a crucial link to the Kassam Stadium for football supporters from across Oxfordshire.

After recently renewing their partnership with Oxford United for the coming season, Thames Travel confirmed fares for match day services will be included in the Government’s bus fare cap scheme. It means adults will pay just £2 for a single bus fare until 31st October 2023.

Thames Travel will continue providing its OX2, OX3 and OX7 services for all home league games and additional services for selected cup games.

The OX2 begins in Didcot with stops in Great Western Park, Steventon, Drayton and Abingdon. The OX3 and OX7 services bring supporters to and from United home games from Witney, Carterton, Brize Norton, Curbridge, Witney, Eynsham, Botley, Kidlington, Summertown, Marston, Cowley and Headington.

Additionally, the Oxford Bus Company’s 3A city centre service serves the Kassam Stadium via a bus stop directly opposite, on Grenoble Road. The service operates every 30 minutes serving Iffley Road, Rose Hill, Oxford Science Park, Littlemore, Greater Leys, Blackbird Leys and Cowley. Passengers using the 3A city service also benefit from cheaper travel, via the Government fare cap.

Luke Marion, Oxford Bus Company and Thames Travel Managing Director said: “We are looking forward to seeing the Football Specials services on the road again as the new season begins.

“The Football Special services are an important community asset and help supporters to attend matches and support their local club safely, while helping reduce congestion and carbon emissions.

"Supporters will be able to benefit from cheaper fares this season via the Government's national fare cap scheme, which makes the Football Specials even better value for money.

“We wish the Yellows and supporters all the best for the season ahead.”

More information is available here:

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