Oxford United welcome leaders Portsmouth on Saturday looking to cause an upset in Sky Bet League 1.
The U’s hit back to claim a valuable draw at Fleetwood last weekend and now return for their first home game of 2019 with Manager Karl Robinson asking his players to step up to the mark and pull away from the danger zone.
“We know we have to step up and that we have been below par in some of our performances in recent weeks” he told iFollow. “Portsmouth have done well and know what their ultimate goal is after three years or so of developing at this level and really looking to move on.
"It’s a model that we have to replicate, and we have to be strong in forthcoming transfer markets to get us there. Kenny Jackett and Joe Gallen- a very good friend of mine- have done great and I take my hat off to what they have achieved this year.
“But I think we can beat anybody on the day. That’s why people will be coming to watch us because there is always that hope and optimism.
“Our next four or five games are as difficult as you are going to get and we have to have complete control of this period of the season. Our recent run of games haven’t got the results we needed and we are in a difficult dogfight. But we have to pull our sleeves up and we know that has to start on Saturday.”
See Karl talking about the departure of Charlie Raglan and the arrival of Ahmed Kashi, plus a first interview with our new signing, and a full Preview Show, all in iFollow right now.