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Match Previews

Match preview: Oxford United v Morecambe

19 August 2022

Morecambe are back on the road on Saturday 20 August when they travel to the Kassam Stadium to take on Oxford United in Sky Bet League One.

In midweek, the Shrimps fell to defeat against Bolton Wanderers at the University of Bolton Stadium, Connor Bradley’s goal six minutes before the break proved to be the difference. 
Out of 15 meetings with the U’s, Morecambe have recorded three victories, six draws and six defeats. The last time the two sides met was in April at the Mazuma Stadium where the Shrimps moved out of the relegation zone with a 2-1 win.
The Opposition 
Karl Robinson's men have registered one win and three losses in their opening four games of the campaign. Their only victory so far in League One came at home against Cambridge United. In their last game, United fell to a 2-1 defeat against Lincoln City in midweek. 
The former MK Dons and Charlton Athletic manager joined Oxford United in March 2018. In his second season, which was affected by COVID, Robinson guided the U’s to a 4th place finish, however his side lost in the Play-Off Final to Gareth Ainsworth's Wycombe Wanderers. The following season, they finished 6th but lost over two legs in the Play-Off Semi-Final against eventual winners Blackpool. 
During his six years at MK Dons, Robinson won promotion to the Championship after finishing League One runners-up in 2015.
Key players
Matty Taylor’s goals will be very important to United’s campaign. The 32-year-old came through the youth setup at Oxford United before going on to play for a number of clubs including Forest Green Rovers, Bristol Rovers and Bristol City. The striker rejoined the U’s in July 2020 following a successful loan spell and has gone on to score nearly 40 goals since his return, 20 of which were in League One last season.
Midfielder Cameron Brannagan contributed with 14 goals in League One last season. The 26-year-old came through the youth setup at Liverpool and made his senior debut for the Reds in the UEFA Europa League against Bordeaux in September 2015. Brannagan spent time on loan at Fleetwood Town before putting pen to paper at Oxford United for an undisclosed fee in January 2018. 
Summer signing Josh Murphy came through the academy at Norwich City alongside twin brother Jacob. The 27-year-old clocked up more than 80 appearances for the Canaries and had loan spells at Wigan Athletic and MK Dons before joining Cardiff City in June 2018. The experienced winger has represented England at U18, U19 and U20 level.
Shrimps’ pre-match thoughts
Derek Adams says the Shrimps are prepared for what will be a tough test at the Kassam Stadium. 
“We are well prepared for the game on Saturday," he said.
“Oxford have changed a few bodies, not as many as we have since last year but they’re a very good side.
"They do have a beautiful ground at home and they are trying to get themselves out of League One and into the Championship. 
"We’ll go there and try and get the better of them, we did it here at the end of last season, it was a fantastic game and it was a much-needed three points at the time.”
Meet the officials 
Benjamin Speedie will take charge of Saturday’s clash. The Merseyside-born referee will be assisted by linesmen Oliver Bickle and Daniel Flynn as well as fourth official Mark Jones.
Speedie has taken charge of four games so far this season and has awarded 18 yellow cards and one red card. He last took charge of the Shrimps during a 0-0 draw away to AFC Wimbledon in January.
After teaming up with Beyond Radio for the 2022/23 season, supporters will be able to listen to exclusive, full and uninterrupted radio commentary of every single game, home and away, which will be broadcast simultaneously on 103.5FM, 107.5FM and DAB+ digital radio across North Lancashire and South Cumbria as well as on the iFollow Shrimps platform.
Lead commentator Matt Horton will be joined by the Club's Media and Content Coordinator, Matt Smith. 
Audio passes are available from as little as £2.50 per match, £4.49 for a monthly pass or £45 for a season pass.
As well as full match commentary, the ‘Shrimps Verdict’ podcast will be available post-match, featuring online, on demand content, including audio match highlights, post-match interviews and reaction, and much more!

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