In Focus once again takes its weekly walk around the facts and figures of our upcoming opponents, this week its Oxford United as we go head to head with the former King of the Dons Karl Robinson, and as we know that always adds a bit of spice to proceedings.
Oxford like us had a very bad start to the season, and it raised that ugly question of whether another manager was going to get the sack after such a very tardy start, and that in the face of being hotly tipped as a promotion candidate. The Oxford owners to their credit kept the faith much like us and have recently reaped the benefit and again like us have gone soaring up the table and have very much put themselves in with a good chance of the playoffs.
A huge injury list, plus cancelled fixtures from Covid and the weather have helped and hindered Oxford, the occasional postponement has allowed players to come back in just at the right time, but I have a huge question mark on their future progress.
They may only be a couple of games behind most teams, but it is all added pressure from now until the end of the season and when you consider their schedule through March and early April includes games with, Peterborough, Charlton, Swindon, Hull, Doncaster, Blackpool, Northampton, Lincoln, Sunderland, and Accrington, it looks to me that those fixtures will either make them, or break them, one thing is for sure they will play a big part in determining the final outcome at the top and bottom of the table.
OXFORD UTD – THE SEASON SO FAR – Oxford United are currently in 8th place with a record of PLAYED 28, WON 13, DRAWN 5, LOST 10, GF 43 & GA 35 and 44 POINTS.
FORM AT A GLANCE – WLWWDL
AWAY LEAGUE RESULTS 2020/21Ipswich 0 Oxford 0
Bristol Rovers 0 Oxford 2
Doncaster 3 Oxford 2
Rochdale 3 Oxford 4
Burton 1 Oxford 5
Plymouth 2 Oxford 3
Blackpool 0 Oxford 0
Portsmouth 1 Oxford 1
Wigan 1 Oxford 2
Fleetwood 2 Oxford 0
Charlton 2 Oxford 0
Peterborough 2 Oxford 0
Gillingham 3 Oxford 1
Accrington 1 Oxford 4
Lincoln 2 Oxford 0
Away Record – Played 15, Won 6, Drawn 3, Lost 6, GF 24 & GA 23.
YEAR OF FORMATION – 1893 as Headington United.
NICKNAME – The U’s, the Yellows.GROUND – The Kassam Stadium (12,500)
THE MANAGER – Love him or hate him it’s the return of one of MK’s favourite sons, the former “King of the Dons”, Karl “Robbo” Edward Robinson, born in Liverpool aged 40. As a striker, he played for several non-league teams although his youth career was at Everton and Blackpool, but injuries limited his career, making just 48 appearances scoring 5 goals.
As we know he undertook his first manager’s role at the MK Dons, overseeing 346 GAMES, with a record of WON 147, DRAWN 81, LOST 118, that’s a WIN RATIO of 42.50%.
He was relieved of his job on the 23rd of October 2016 after nearly six and a half years in charge, and at the time he was the 3rd longest serving manager in England. Just over a month later he took over at Charlton where he stayed for about 18 months before leaving by mutual consent to join Oxford United on the very same day. Initially signed on a two-year deal that has now been extended for another two years to take him to August 2022.His record is to say the least impressive, a bang average manager sits around the 33%-win ratio mark, Robinson currently boasts a WIN RATIO of 41 % with a career managerial record of GAMES 579, WON 240, DRAWN 146, LOST 193.
FORMER MANAGERS – Since Oxford turned pro in 1949, they have had 38 managers, some of which have been caretaker managers, and in 1958 a committee of board members selected the team. Past incumbents include Ron Saunders, Jim Smith, Brian Talbot, Garry Waddock, Ian Atkins, Graham Rix, and Mark Wright.
It should be noted that since 2000, Oxford have had 22 different managers.
PLAYED FOR BOTH – On the conveyer belt tonight we have Keith Andrews, George Baldock, Jake Forster-Caskey, Lewis Guy, Rob “The Knee” Hall, Zeli Ismail, Peter Leven, Dean Morgan, Giorgio Rasulo and Jude Stirling.
MATCHDAY MASCOT – Olly the Ox along with his friend Olivia.
FAMOUS FANS – Timmy Mallet from children’s TV, and Radiohead drummer Phil Selway.
SHOOTERS BOOTS – Matty Taylor with 12 goals.
CURRENT INTERNET MATCH ODDS – Dons 8/5 Draw 13/5 Oxford 9/5
LAST TIME ROUND – October 20th – Oxford 3 MK Dons 2
Team – Nicholls, Williams, Cargill, Lewington, Poole, Kasumu (Thompson), Houghton, Fraser, Harvie (Gladwin), Jerome (Mason), Morris.
Unused Subs – Keogh, S Walker, Sorinola, L Walker
Goals – Taylor 6’, Jerome 11’, Long 57’, Shodipo 88’, Gladwin 90 +2’.
Referee – Kevin Johnson ( 5 Yellows)
Attendance – Behind Closed Doors.
HEAD 2 HEAD
2020/21 – Oxford 3 MK Dons 2 – (Jerome, Gladwin)
2019/20 – MK Dons 1 Oxford 0 – (Mason)
2017/18 – Oxford 3 MK Dons 1 – (Gilbey)
2017/18 – Oxford 3 MK Dons 4 (FLT) – (Thomas-Asante, Ariyibi 2, Seager)
2017/18 – MK Dons 1 Oxford 1 – (Brittain)
2016/17 – Oxford 1 MK Dons 0
2016/17 – MK Dons 0 Oxford 0