The Kassam Stadium
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Extra info
  Basham 7
  McCarthy 77
It was a windy day in Blackbird Leys when the roof blew off and the Harriers caved in.
This week the results go against us.
  Murray 45
 harriers-online match report
Saturday 31st January 2004 
It was a windy day in Blackbird Leys

For the second time in a week the Harriers found themselves involved in off the field problems when the second half of this game was delayed by forty minutes due to part of the roof of the almost brand new Kassam Stadium coming away.

On Tuesday the home game against Cheltenham was cancelled after an electrical problem and this one was also in doubt before the game started owing to a rain sodden pitch.  So the high winds were the last thing we needed today, especially after coming back from an early goal by Steve Basham to equalise in the final seconds of the first half with another goal from midfielder, Adam Murray.

Both teams were struggling to put anything together but it was Oxford who settled first when, on seven minutes, Dean Whitehead sent in a corner from the left.  Utd's leading scorer Steve Basham, who was unmarked fifteen yards from goal, headed the ball downwards past Stuart Brock to find the back of the net.

Five minutes later and the Harriers had their first chance when confusion between Andy Crosby and keeper Andy Woodman almost gifted us an own goal after Crosby headed just over his own bar.  Four minutes later and Jesper Christiansen saw his twenty yard shot test Woodman but the keeper had no problem holding it.

With the wind at their backs the Harriers continued to pressurise the home side and Graham Ward went close with another long range shot that this time came back off the bar.  Utd replied with with an attack involving Foran but, in the swirling wind, he failed to control it properly and the chance went.

With the first 45 minutes drawing to a close the Harriers pulled a goal back through Adam Murray.  The ball was running loose thirty yards from goal as Murray collected it, looked up, and let go a screamer into the far corner of the net.

HT. 1 - 1

After the delay, due to the stand roof, it was the Harriers who now found themselves playing into the worsening conditions and Brockie was finding it hard to get his kicks out of the area let alone past the halfway line.

Foran, who was having a bad game soon found himself replaced by Mark Rawle and it was Rawle who found himself with the first chance of the half for Oxford when he shot just wide from the edge of the area.   The Harriers only chance to score in this half fell for Dean Bennett when his shot from an acute angle inside the area was almost helped home by Sean Parrish, on for Graham Ward.  Oxford's Robinson was hand to clear it off the line though.

With the conditions in their favour Utd sent on another striker for a defender when they took of McNiven for Lee Steele.  The extra numbers up front paid an immediate dividend when the U's increased their lead for the final goal of the game.

Again the goal came from our Achilles Heel, a corner.  This time Whitehead took it and found Paul McCarthy unmarked at the far post to power home his first goal of the season with a thumping header.

Jan Molby must know that we have a problem with corners, both in defending and scoring, but I'm not allowed to voice my opinion about that.

Steele nearly increased the lead with a header from Rawle’s cross in the dying minutes and Wayne Hatswell picked up his fifth yellow of the season after a late challenge and will now miss the re-arranged Cheltenham game.

After last weeks results going our way, this week it was reversed with Cheltenham and Darlington both winning and Macclesfield picking up a point at Yeovil to send us down to fourth from bottom and just five points in front of Southend.

FT. 2 - 1

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Oxford  subs   cards      Harriers  subs   cards 
Woodman     Brock  
McCarthy     Gadsby  
Ashton   Stamps  
Crosby     D Williams  
McNiven     Hinton  
Whitehead     Hatswell
Wanless     Bennett  
Hunt     Murray  
Basham     Christiansen  
Foran     Henriksen  
Robinson     Ward  
SUBS:       SUBS:    
Hackett     Danby  
Steele     Rickards  
Bound     J Williams  
Waterman     Parrish  
Rawle     Smith  

Mr E Evans

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