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Oxford United Weekly Round-Up: Chairman Comments and Transfer Rumours

Oxford United

The season may be over but there has still been plenty of news at Oxford United over the last seven days.

Chairman Grant Ferguson discussed potential new arrivals, while one player has been linked with a move away.

Oxford United Weekly Round-Up: Chairman and Manager Comments and Transfer Rumours Begin

‘We’re Looking for a Number of Very, Very Good Signings’

U’s chairman Grant Ferguson has said that the club are looking to target both quality and quantity when it comes to the transfer window.

Speaking to the Oxford Mail, he said: “Ed’s [Waldron, head of recruitment] got a busy summer ahead, but Ed being Ed, he started on two different scenarios weeks ago.

“He’s got a very clear idea as the type of player we want. I don’t think we’re looking for a marquee signing. We’re looking for a number of very, very good signings.

“We need a combination of experience that will then leverage against young, high-quality players. What we’ll do is go for the very best young players and take them with us on the journey.”

‘I Can’t Speak Highly Enough of Grant Ferguson and Tim Williams’

Oxford head coach Des Buckingham has praised the club’s board for backing him during a difficult spell.

The 39-year-old oversaw a patchy run of form before eventually ending the campaign in fifth and winning promotion to the Championship via the playoffs.

Speaking after the club’s promotion in the League One play-off final, Buckingham credited United chairman Grant Ferguson and chief executive Tim Williams for backing him when times were tough.

He said: “I can’t speak highly enough of Grant Ferguson and Tim Williams. I was tested, and there were a couple of dark days, and you go to some bad places at times.

“You have to then stick to yourself, and you test your behaviours and your beliefs, but when you get the support of your chairman and your CEO in the way I did, there was never in my mind that worry.”

“The support they gave me, and that those around gave, that for me was a wonderful sign of where our football club is.”

He added: “The last six months have been a whirlwind. You’re trying to prove you can coach at this level, firstly to the players, secondly to the fans, and thirdly, to everyone else that said you have no experience at this level of football.

“You get tested all the time, like I have in the last three roles I had. There’s been a lot of change for me, but the real things that helped were the staff here.

“I came here by myself, but Craig Short, Lewis Price, Chris Hackett and Ed Waldron, to name but a few, the way we utilised that skillset and formed relationships makes things a little bit easier than it would be to coming in and trying to build things from start.”

Oxford United Transfer Rumours

The transfer rumours have begun and there has been one potential incoming and one potential outgoing over the last week.

Numerous reports claimed Oxford were one of several clubs targeting Brighton midfielder, Mark Leonard.

Wrexham and Cardiff are also believed to be interested in the 22-year-old, who has spent the last two seasons on loan at Northampton.

The Scot has one year left on his current deal at the AMEX Stadium and the U’s are believed to be targeting a permanent deal.

In terms of departures, U’s midfielder Oisin Smyth has been targeted by Scottish side, St Mirren.

The 24-year-old struggled for game time despite the U’s winning promotion to the Championship so a move away could be a good deal for both parties.

Smyth joined the U’s in January 2022 but managed just 16 appearances in all competitions this season.

Another report claimed that the Northern Ireland man had undergone a medical with the club, who will be involved in a European competition next season.


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