Oxford United Weekly Round-Up: Fleetwood Town Stalemate and FA Cup Postponement

Oxford United

Oxford United were due to kick off their FA Cup campaign this week with a trip to Woking but the match was postponed.

Also in the last seven days, Karl Robinson’s side drew against Fleetwood Town in League One and the club appointed a new academy manager.

Oxford United Weekly Round-Up: League One Draw, New Academy Manager and FA Cup Postponement

Winless Home Run Continues With Draw Against Fleetwood

The U’s began the week by drawing 1-1 at home against Fleetwood Town.

The visitors took the lead inside two minutes and could have even opened the scoring before then. Once they got their goal, they sat back and defended.

However, just four minutes into the second half, Oxford levelled when Gatlin O’Donkor poked home his first senior goal.

Both sides created further chances but had to share the spoils.

U’s Appoint Former Player as Head of Academy

Oxford United have appointed former full-back Stevie Kinniburgh as the club’s new academy manager.

The 33-year-old replaces Dan Harris, who left the club in August after four and a half years.

Kinniburgh initially joined the U’s as a player in 2009, when he signed on loan from Rangers. He joined permanently in May 2010, before leaving in January 2012.

His playing career involved a selection of non-league clubs, before becoming player-manager at Corby Town, aged just 27.

He has since returned to Scotland to take on a prestigious role in youth development within the SFA as player and coach development manager.

Speaking to the club’s official website, he said: “It’s a very proud moment to come back to Oxford and be asked to take charge of the academy.

“I want to thank the SFA for their understanding – my family were settled in Scotland and I wouldn’t have left for any other club but Oxford has such a special place in my heart.

“I have seen the progress that the academy has made and Dan Harris did an amazing job; he has left a great bunch of people within the academy who I look forward to getting to know and working alongside.

“I am passionate about the club and about turning young footballers into first-team players and I cannot wait to get started.”

Kinniburgh will begin his role at the start of next month. Chairman Greg Ferguson added: “We had some extremely high calibre applicants who spoke very well at interview and we thank them all for their interest but Stevie was the outstanding candidate.

“He is extremely well qualified, he knows the club inside out, and everyone we spoke to told us he would put his heart and soul into the role.

“He will work alongside Matt Jarvis, who has done an excellent job in the interim, and we know the future of the academy is in very good hands.”

First-team manager Karl Robinson added: “I didn’t know Stevie as a player but the moment I heard him on the radio after our games I asked who he was because he was so knowledgeable and obviously cared about the club. He questioned things, he had strong views, and I like those qualities.

“The academy manager is a key role at any football club and I have spent time getting to know Stevie a bit better.

“He is honest, hard-working, well-respected and a massive believer in giving young talented players a chance to progress.

“I think it’s an outstanding appointment. He has excellent qualifications and like all of us wants to take the academy to the next level. We all look forward to working with him.”

Young U’s Through in FA Youth Cup

Oxford’s U18 side navigated their way through to the second round of the FA Youth Cup with a 3-1 over Torquay United.

Left-back Richard Gerrard opened the scoring before efforts from Kasway Burton and Aidan Elliott-Wheeler put the result beyond doubt.

The visitors did reduce the deficit but it wasn’t enough.

FA Cup Tie Postponed

On Sunday, Oxford’s FA Cup first-round tie at Woking was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.

The U’s were gearing up for their clash against the National League side but now will have to wait for the fixture to be rearranged.

Speaking to the club’s official website, Robinson said: “We’re gutted not to be playing today but we do understand the decision and we know that the competition deserves games that are a spectacle for fans and players in the right conditions.

“Some of our staff were already at the ground and saw the pitch for themselves, the rest of us and the players were making our way there but the decision was made early enough for us to turn round and report to the Bangkok Glass Training Centre to train and prepare for Wednesday night’s game at Shrewsbury.”