Oxford United boss Karl Robinson will be in the stand for his 600th game as a Manager.
The former MK Dons and Charlton Manager is suspended as the U’s travel to the Abbey Stadium on Saturday but couldn’t hide his excitement to be in charge of a new-look U’s at the start of a brand new season.
“The buzz around the place has been building for a while” he told iFollow. “I have spent a lot of time in Oxford this pre-season and the amount of people smiling and excited seems to be growing although everyone says ‘good luck but we know it’s going to be a difficult league this season!’
“But to know we are taking over 1,400 people to Cambridge on Saturday is going to make it an emotional day for all of us. The Euros whetted the appetite for football again and I think people will have a smile but also a sadness on Saturday because they have missed going to football so much - Charlton will be the same for their fans next week, they sold 1,800 tickets really quickly. The first two games in the league will be fantastic occasions and that big wall of yellow behind the goal is going to be an amazing sight.
“Can I also mention to those fans going that even though you may feel comfortable in your surroundings look after each other because people next to you may still be fearful of being in a crowd again. Our fans travel with tremendous respect for each other, they make an amazing amount of noise, so enjoy yourselves but also make sure we all do the right things.
“We are up against a very good side with a Manager who has had an excellent first year in management, helped by Gary Waddock who is a true gentleman and a real football person. I am sure they will look forward to it just as much as us. They are a good club and we respect every aspect of who they are. I don’t talk about the opposition much; that’s not disrepect for any team, but I’m not their Manager.
“All I know is that we are ready ourselves. We have two players unavailable because we followed the correct protocols and we will always put people’s health ahead of anything else. If you look after your players then everything else looks after itself. But we had no new scares when we tested today, we are in really good shape. Whatever we face we know we can adapt, we have learned to be flexible and we can’t wait to get under way again at the weekend.”
See the full interview, along with the new-look Preview Show and an exclusive interview with Jack Stevens, all in iFollow where you can also hear the game in the UK or see it overseas.