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Match Reports


1 December 2020

Points shared in Oxford

Town played out a goalless draw with Oxford United at the Kassam Stadium.

Oxford came closest to breaking the deadlock in the first half when James Henry headed against the post.

David Cornell stood strong to deny the hosts in the second half, while Jon Nolan and Oli Hawkins both had chances to grab a winner in a game of few clear cut chances.

Paul Lambert made five changes to the Town XI from Saturday’s defeat to Charlton at Portman Road.

Amongst the changes, Armando Dobra was handed his first League start of the season. Whilst Nolan was also back in the side after recovering from a groin injury.

After a quiet opening to the game, Keanan Bennetts had the first sight of goal after 14 minutes, receiving the ball on the half-turn from Nolan and then driving at the Oxford defence, before firing over from 25 yards out.

The hosts should’ve taken the lead after 22 minutes. Liam Kelly’s deep corner was met by Elliott Moore who climbed highest, but his header was just wide of the mark.

On the half hour mark, Elliott McGuane picked up the ball on the left flank and cut in with purpose, before seeing his powerful effort from the edge of the area beaten away by Cornell.

Oxford came even closer on 38 minutes, with Henry’s header from eight yards out crashing off the post from a Matty Taylor cross, which Blues eventually cleared.

After an uneventful 15 minutes after the restart, Town made a double change with Hawkins and Kayden Jackson replacing Andre Dozzell and Jack Lankester respectively. 

Cornell had to be alert to face Henry's fierce drive from 25 yards out, which was moving in the air all the way and the Town stopper beat the ball away to safety.

The game came to life on 74 minutes. Taylor latched on to a floated through ball and tried to lift the ball over the oncoming Cornell, but the Town stopper stood strong to deny.

Town then immediately broke up the other end, with Dobra teeing up Nolan on the edge area, who fired his drilled effort just over the crossbar.

Blues were beggining to build momentum and won a corner from Bennetts' low drive. From the resultant corner, Andre Dozzell's floated corner skidded across the top of the crossbar, before falling to Hawkins whose header was blocked.

Dozzell picked up a booking late on for a foul on Sean Clare, which will see the Blues midfielder miss out on Saturday's trip to Plymouth after collecting five yellow cards.

Hawkins rose highest to meet Dozzell's free-kick, but his header was straight down Jack Stevens' throat.

Town looked the more likely to grab a winner in the closing stages, but it ended goalless on a cold night at the Kassam Stadium.

Oxford: Stevens, Ruffels, Moore, Gorrin, Taylor, Long, Henry (Clare 79), McGuane, Atkinson, Shodipo (Obita 72), Kelly.

Subs: Eastwood, Hall, Forde, Mousinho, Agyei.

Town: Cornell, Chambers, Woolfenden, McGuinness, Ward, Dozzell (Hawkins 60), Nolan, Lankester (Jackson 60), Bennetts, Drinan, Dobra (Judge 79).

Subs: Holy, Donacien, Kenlock, Gibbs.

Booked: Dozzell

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