Oxford United face the league leaders on Saturday when Wigan Athletic come to Grenoble Road in Sky Bet League 1.
United are in good form after four games undefeated and Manager Pep Clotet believes it will be a great test for his improving side
“It’s the two sides who scored the most goals in the league” he told iFollow. “Wigan defend very well too so we know it is going to be a huge test for us. It is three very good points to compete for and I have full trust in my team. We have the experience from the game against Blackburn who are another strong team who will be competing to be in the top two with Wigan and we have to make sure there are no mistakes and that our intensity is at the right level.
“If our focus and our trust in our football is there then we know we have been good against good footballing sides. We just have to be one hundred percent for the full 90 minutes. We have always competed very well against the top teams. It’s a difficult game against a Wigan side who won their last four but at the same time we trust ourselves and know we will be very motivated.”
It’s the start of a run of four games in quick succession over Christmas and Pep is well aware of the importance of this time of the year:
“We will have Sunday as a rest day and then train on Christmas Day before travelling down to Gillingham on Christmas night to be ready for Boxing Day. It’s about getting the balance right between competing and recovery. It is important to have a little bit of time with your family at Christmas but never losing sight of the fact that over the next ten days or so every point will be important and every team that keeps their intensity through the Christmas period has a huge boost for January.”
Agon Mehmeti could return to the bench after a hamstring problem as United’s injury problems start to fade.
“Agon has trained for the full week” Pep confirmed “so that’s another one coming back and that just leaves Curtis Nelson, Rob Hall and Ivo Pekalski in the treatment room, with Charlie Raglan and Sam Long getting a good level of fitness and Gino back in the squad after two or three weeks of full training.”
See the full interview above as well as the thoughts of captain John Mousinho in iFollow where we will have the whole game LIVE - hear it in the UK, see it if you are an exiled United fan.
It’s a big game for the U’s. Book your place and start Christmas the right way by visiting www.oufctickets.co.uk or calling 01865 337533