United take to the road for the first time this campaign with a trip to Oxford for the newspapers favourite imaginary rivalry – the Boat Race derby! Find out who’ll sink and who’ll swim with our match preview.
Expected U’s Line-Up: We saw nine changes on Tuesday against Millwall in the cup, but will we make another nine for this game, or did anyone put in enough of a showing to keep their place? One thing’s for sure, Bonner’s going to have a lot of selection headaches this season, with United able to field two strong teams for the first time since he took the role. Rumours abound about an injury to Brandon Haunstrup so we imagine Dunk will return to left back, but Saikou Janneh did enough to keep James Brophy on the bench in our eyes. Shilow Tracey will drop for Smith if he’s got over his dead leg, and The Knibbler should come in for Jack Lankester.
Mitov, Williams, Jones, Okedina, Dunk, Digby, May, Janneh, Knibbs, Smith, Ironside
Who’s In The Dugout? Anyone who’s listened to the brilliant recent BBC Podcast Moment of Truth on iPlayer will be familiar with Scouse David Brent-alike Karl Robinson. Formerly at MK Dons and Charlton, Robinson took over at the Kassam back in 2018.
Who’s Their Player To Watch?
Ancient defender John Mousinho has knocked around Leagues One and Two pretty much his entire career bar a short stint in the Championship with Burton Albion. Despite his age he’s still a formidable opponent, and will probably spend the game looking to kick seven bells out of Sam Smith. Doesn’t look like old man Mousinho’s going to be playing, so keep ’em peeled for Cameron Brannagan instead. He came through the ranks at Anfield, but ended up at Oxford in 2018 via a short loan spell at Fleetwood. He’s made almost 200 appearances in the yellow of Oxford.
What’s Their Recent Form Like? They lost to Derby last week and currently sit in the bottom four, not that that means anything at this early stage of the season.
Any Ex-United Players? Nope
Last Time Out: Oxford 4 – 2 United, 26 Feb 2022
A Sam Smith brace wasn’t enough to get the points at the Kassam in this emotionally charged game.
UTAS Versus: Where we predict the outcome of the match against a special guest. 1 point for the correct outcome, 3 points for the correct score. This week it’s George Elek from the Not The Top 20 Pod.
George: 2-1 Oxford
Total: UTAS 1, Guests 0
A Matchday Album To Listen To: Thom Yorke – The Eraser
An oldie but a goodie, this solo album from the Radiohead frontman came out back in 2006 but still stands up with any of his band material. Check out the additional EP of remixes too for some truly brilliant takes on the original album.
From The Archive: United 1-1 Oxford, 19 October 2002
Remember Shane Tudor? He didn’t much like living in Cambridge, but he couldn’t half hit ’em. A great volley put the U’s ahead in this encounter from the early 00’s before we were pegged back.