U's chairman 'Tiger' writes in the Emirates FA Cup programme against Newcastle United:
What a great evening for everyone associated with Oxford United. We welcome Newcastle and hope that everyone has a memorable night here at the Kassam Stadium.
I thought that the first game was a great advertisement for this famous competition. We got better as the game went on and might have scored a winner, but overall I think a draw was probably fair and a replay means that we get to show off our football club live on BBC TV. I am sure they will enjoy the spectacle, the colour and the atmosphere and I would love them to see an upset.
Saturday’s league game against Blackpool was important for slightly different reasons. Because of the cup game and then the loss of a league game against Bury, we were helpless while our promotion rivals got to play two games, so it was important for the team to make up for lost time and get three points. I thought it was a good performance and we were looking comfortable but then in injury time Blackpool got through and the shot was rolling past Simon Eastwood and towards our net. Like all of you, I held my breath and waited and luckily the ball clipped the outside of the post and rolled wide.
I think it just shows how close things are and maybe highlighted the drama still to come in the rest of the season. We are in an amazing position in the league, we have a chance to get through to the last 16 of the FA Cup and all our energy is going towards building on this situation.
The last day of the transfer window saw Shandon Baptiste and Tariqe Fosu leave us, and that was sad for all of us, but remember that in the same window we brought in Marcus Browne, Nathan Holland, Liam Kelly and Rob Atkinson and made George Thorne a permanent signing. With Ben Woodburn back soon and Cameron Brannagan, James Henry, Matty Taylor and Jamie Hanson all fit again, we feel we are in good shape for the challenges ahead of us.
Enjoy your evening; be loud, sing your hearts out and be part of the night. It’s the FA Cup; you never know what might happen…
Sumrith 'Tiger' Thanakarnjanasuth
You can read the full programme online at www.matchdayfix.com/oufc