Oxford United Weekly Round-Up: Loss Against Wigan Athletic and Covid Increase

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Another busy week for Oxford United has been and gone, ending with just a second home defeat of the season against Wigan Athletic.

Elsewhere, the U’s have been hit with another Covid outbreak while there has been an update on some of the club’s young players’ loan spells.

Oxford United Weekly Round-Up: League Loss Against Wigan and Positive Covid Cases

U’s Loan Update

Defender Michael Elechi and midfielder Leon Chambers-Parillon have seen their loan spells extended at Salisbury and Havant & Waterlooville respectively.

Elechi, who has made three appearances for Oxford, has lengthened his stay with Salisbury by an additional month while Chambers-Parillon, who has turned out eight times for the U’s, will stay with Havant until the end of the season, with both deals having a 24-hour recall option available.

Elsewhere, highly-rated midfielder Tyler Goodrham and defender Ben Watt have been sent out on a one-month loan.

Goodrham, who has two senior appearances to his name, enjoyed a loan spell with Hayes & Yeading United earlier this season and has joined Slough Town in the National League South.

Right-back Watt, who is yet to make a senior appearance for the U’s, had spent time at Stratford Town this season but teams up with fellow Oxford youngster Mackenzie Chapman at St Ives on a short term deal.

Oxford United Lose Against Brentford in Friendly Match

On Tuesday, Oxford hosted a Brentford B side in a friendly match at the club’s training ground. Importantly for the U’s, there was a return for goalkeeper Jack Stevens while Ryan Williams, Billy Bodin, Sam Winnall and Dan Agyei all got minutes under their belts.

Despite the return of Stevens, the goalkeeper had already picked the ball out of the back of his net twice within the first six minutes against the Bees. That said, the U’s bounced back with goals from Williams and Winnall.

Before the break, Brentford retook the lead and held out for the remainder of the game to secure the win.

Kie Plumley Pens First Professional Deal

Young goalkeeper Kie Plumley has signed his first professional contract with Oxford United. The 18-year-old has been handed an 18-month deal with the option of an additional year.

The goalkeeper has been on the bench in recent weeks given the absence of Jack Stevens but is yet to make an appearance for the senior side.

Plumley, who signed as a scholar in January 2020, has also spent time out on loan at Weston-super-Mare.

Positive Covid Case in Oxford Camp

Ahead of their match against Wigan, Karl Robinson confirmed that there had been two positive coronavirus cases within the club, with one player and one member of staff coming down with the virus.

Speaking to the Oxford Mail, the U’s boss said: “One thing that is incredibly important is clarity, if we all know regulations and we all respect the regulations, then I’m all for that.

“We do have two cases internally, one staff member and one player – it’s part of the world we live in.

“Both people are asymptomatic which shows you it’s so easy to catch it.”

U’s Tracking St Patrick’s Athletic Winger

According to the Independent.ie reporter Daniel McDonnell, Oxford United are tracking St Patrick’s Athletic winger Darragh Burns.

However, the U’s face competition from Hibernian and several other League One clubs, according to the report.

The 19-year-old scored seven times in 29 appearances as St. Pat’s finished second in the League of Ireland Premier Division but was key as they won the FAI Cup.

Depleted Oxford United Lose Against the Latics

Before Oxford’s match at home to Wigan, U’s boss Karl Robinson confirmed that the number of positive cases in the camp had risen from one on Thursday to four by Saturday.

Despite not naming the individuals, Luke McNally, Cameron Brannagan and Herbie Kane all missed the match while Nathan Holland and Sam Winnall sat out with injury.

The in-form Latics raced into a two-goal lead against a makeshift Oxford midfield, who also lost James Henry in the warm-up. However, goals from Ryan Williams and Matty Taylor brought the game level.

Despite having more possession than the visitors, Oxford were unable to keep Wigan out for a third time as James McClean struck late on to end the U’s nine-game unbeaten run.

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