Oxford United recorded mixed results this week with three points from their two games in League One. Elsewhere, the U’s have been handed a double injury blow while two of Oxford’s youngsters will get some more game time out on loan.
Oxford United Weekly Round-Up: Loss Against Pompey but Victory Over the Brewers
U’s Youngster Sees Slough Loan Extended
Oxford United’s promising youngster Tyler Goodrham has seen his loan at Slough Town extended until April.
The 18-year-old, who joined the National League South side in December, has already impressed during his loan spell, scoring three times from 12 league matches.
Moore Injury Concern
The U’s have been dealt a defensive injury blow with captain Elliott Moore sidelined for “anything from six to eight weeks.”
The skipper picked up the ankle injury in a recent win over Crewe Alexandra and is now likely to miss a large part of the run-in, according to Oxford boss Karl Robinson.
Speaking to the Oxford Mail, he said: “It’s minimum four weeks, we think, but we’re still waiting for a clear reading.
“It can be anything from six to eight weeks as well, so it could be a lot longer.
“It sounds like a long period of time, but you just don’t know how these things react. It’ll be more based on his ability to recover in the right way.
“We know he’ll get all the best treatment here and we’ll do everything we possibly can to turn him around for the real back end of the season.
“It’s a big loss to us, he’s our captain.”
Defeat at Fratton Park for Oxford United
Oxford’s three-game winning run came to an end with a 3-2 defeat on the road at Portsmouth. The U’s took an early lead through Marcus Browne but two quick goals before the break for the hosts turned the game on its head.
Pompey added a third after the break before Luke McNally reduced the deficit late on. Despite their impressive comebacks in recent weeks, the U’s were unable to do it again, but they stayed fourth in League One despite the dropped points.
Sykes Focusing on Promotion
U’s midfielder Mark Sykes remains focused on achieving promotion with the club despite being out of contract in the summer.
The 24-year-old has been one of the club’s most impressive players this season but insists he is concentrating on matters on the field.
Speaking to the Oxford Mail, Sykes said: “I’m pretty much in a similar position to even before January, just wanting to do the best I can for the club I’m at.
“I want to win as many games as possible for Oxford and if we were to get promoted this year it would be really positive for me and the club.
“It’s not a distraction, because there’s nothing else happening for me at the minute. I’m at Oxford and I’m here to get promoted.
“Come the end of the season we’ll see where we end up, but at the minute I want to do the best I can for this club.”
U’s Youngster Joins Oxford City on Loan
Promising youngster Gatlin O’Donkor has joined National League South side Oxford City on a work experience loan.
The 17-year-old, who has made three substitute appearances for the U’s, has been in lethal form for the reserve and U18 sides.
The club’s youngest ever player joins the third-placed Hoops and scored on his debut in a 5-0 win over Tonbridge Angels.
Browne Sidelined for Six Weeks
Before Oxford United took to the pitch against Burton Albion, Robinson revealed that deadline day signing Marcus Browne could be out for up to six weeks with a hamstring injury.
The 24-year-old picked up the injury during Oxford’s defeat at Portsmouth on Tuesday night, in which he scored the opening goal after just three minutes.
Speaking to the Oxford Mail, Robinson said: “We think Marcus will be up to six weeks. He’s got a little nick in his hamstring, not too bad.
“We always knew he’d be dropping in and out. In some ways I’m not too down about it, he’ll be back for the last three or four weeks of the season and the playoffs if that’s where we end up.
“The big thing is we can now build him how we want to. We knew he had one or two issues with his hamstring coming into this and we knew it was a bit of a risk.
“I take responsibility for playing him in that game but it was worth it in some ways.
“We didn’t get the result, but we managed to protect some other players as well.
“We’re a bit frustrated by it, but we knew this was always going to be a probability somewhere along the way.”
Oxford United Breeze Past the Brewers
The U’s bounced back from their defeat at Fratton Park with a comfortable 4-1 victory over Burton Albion.
Sam Baldock gave Oxford an early lead before Gavin Whyte netted his first of the season with a long-range effort. Baldock struck his second and Oxford’s third before Matty Taylor volleyed home his 20th goal of the campaign.
Burton did pull one back before the break but the U’s were too good for their opponents. The result keeps Robinson’s side in fourth spot, four points clear of fifth-placed Wycombe Wanderers.