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Match Reports

REPORT Oxford United 0 Exeter City 1

U's lose to the Grecians. Full time report

1 January 2023

Match Reports

REPORT Oxford United 0 Exeter City 1

U's lose to the Grecians. Full time report

1 January 2023

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2023 started with a defeat for Oxford United as they were beaten 1-0 by Exeter City at the Kassam Stadium this afternoon.

United enjoyed plenty of possession but it came to little when a Sam Nombe goal in the second half saw the Grecians earn all three points.

To be fair, Exeter created two excellent early chances with Josh Key firing over from six yards and Nombe denied by a superb block from the sliding Ciaron Brown before United carved them open with their own first opportunity and Tyler Goodrham’s header from a Yanic Wildschut cross was well saved by keeper Jamal Blackman.

Djavan Anderson almost won goal of the season with a driving run from his own half that ended with his shot from inside the area blocked and slowly but surely the game began to flow United’s way.

Wildschut and Goodrham are bright and inventive, the former catching the eye with his close control and power on his full debut, and with the midfield trio of Man of the Match Lewis Bate, Marcus McGuane and Cameron Brannagan controlling the game, it left Exeter having to play on the counter. Something it turns out they are very good at...

010123 exeter (6).jpg

Goodrham, Matty Taylor, McGuane and Wildschut all had further half chances, there were penalty shouts for a foul on Goodrham and then Taylor had the best chance of the entire afternoon only for his low drive to skid back across goal via the base of the right-hand post.

Somehow Exeter stood firm to keep it level at the break, despite coming under increasing pressure, and then that ability to hit on the break came to the fore.

United kept up the intensity but there was always the danger of a sucker punch, and a reminder came on 66 when Ed McGinty had to somehow block another Key effort from close range.

Back came United and Blackman made a good save from Brannagan, but captain Elliott Moore was the saviour when he once again denied Key with 20 minutes to go, throwing himself in front of a shot that was otherwise destined for the corner of the net.

After 80 minutes the danger became all too apparent when the visitors scored from an Oxford corner. The moment the ball was cleared there were problems, and despite Brannagan doing his best to fight the wave of blue shirts racing at him, the ball ran kindly for a three-man breakaway. McGinty saved the first effort, but Nombe had nobody in front of him and easily rolled the ball into the empty net to make it 1-0. Comfortably Nombe.

Only a superb McGinty save kept United in it soon after, and Exeter, who had conceded four goals against United in the two previous meetings this season, withstood a late barrage to keep hold of a valuable three points and gain revenge for those two earlier defeats.

Not a great start to the new year. Let's see if United can bounce back. Against Arsenal...

Att: 8,604
Away: 619

Fifty/50 winning number 57183 wins £953

The winning prize was: £950

Report by Chris Williams, pictures Steve Daniels and Steve Edmunds

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