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Match preview Vs Oxford Utd

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Date: 06-02-10gif Venue: Kassam Stadiumgif Kick off: 15:00hrs
Marc Goodfellow (right), newly sponsored by Harriers Online, should be making his debut for us this weekend at title chasers Oxford Utd as the Harriers aim to do the double over their near neighbours.  We beat them back at Aggborough in November by a 3-1 scoreline that, by the end of the game, had Utd and their many followers a demoralised crew.  Two well taken goals from Robbie Matthews and the other from the now departed Matt Barnes-Homer did for the visitors.

Marc Goodfellow It wasn't the first time we have beaten them.  A home win in the previous season and two away wins in 04-05 and then again in 06-07 (that one with a cracking goal from Simon Russell) have seen both sides equally matched in recent years.  What are the chances of beating them again this time out?

Frankly, not too good.  The side we have now compared to the side we had in November is woefully short of fire power because MBH has never been replaced even though we were told that the transfer fee would go to the manager for new players and by that I take it a striker would have been top of the list.

Robbie Matthews rarely seems to get a run in the side due to injuries or illness.  Damian Spencer has the shooting ability of a Worcester City striker and Aaron Farrell is a man terrified of his own shadow.

Utd on the other hand are a side brimful of fire power and class all over the park.  We all know about James Constable but they also have Jack Midson, Francis Green and Alfie Potter banging goals in for them.  The rest of the team is made up with top quality non league players with the likes of Mark Creighton, Chris Hargreaves, Danny Bulman, Adam Murray and Antony Tonkin amongst their number.

We can still go there and get a result though if we can keep playing the way that Steve Burr wants us to play.  It looks like he'll be going wide and utilising wingers to supply Spencer and Matthews with goal scoring opportunities.  It's something we've been without since Martin Brittain left us for Gateshead at the end of last season.

Goodfellow will be on one side while Kyle Hadley could be the other winger but he could be out injured following the Trophy win at Worcester last Monday.  He came on as a sub in place of Aaron Farrell and did more in ten minutes than Farrell had done all game but it now seems he took a knock and could miss the trip to Oxford.

John Finnigan also could be out with bruised ribs and so could Damian Spencer who also picked up an injury.  Robbie Matthews should be back after a migraine forced him to miss the game.  David McDermott will certainly be out but is now back in training following the successful treatment of his stomach ulcers.

This could be an interesting game for another reason because it will be a good chance to rehearse for the next round because our reward for beating Worcester is a trip to Oxford in the 4th round.  Let's hope that we have some success on both occasions.

Photo © BAFC


Teams:

Harriers from:
Coleman, Singh, Baker, Riley, Courtney, Sharpe, Farrell, Finnigan, Knights, Hadley, McPhee, Bennett, Hayward, Caines, Spencer, Smikle, Goodfellow, Matthews.

Oxford from:
Clarke, Turley, Hargreaves, Fowler, Batt, Sandwith, Bulman, Creighton, Chapman, Murray, Constable, Midson, Clist, Wright, Potter, Day, Tonkin, F Green, Deering, M Green, Cook, Woodley, Groves, Sampson.

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