Appleton banks on market changes

U’s head coach Michael Appleton is looking to dip into the transfer market again

U’s head coach Michael Appleton is looking to dip into the transfer market again

First published in Sport Witney Gazette: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Sports Reporter covering Oxford United. Follow us on twitter: @oxfordmailoufc. Call me on 01865 425458

Head coach Michael Appleton is banking on exploiting a changing transfer market as he continues his hunt to strengthen Oxford United’s attacking options.

The club have brought in five players in as many weeks since Appleton was appointed as part of a takeover at the top.

It has helped get the squad ready for the new Sky Bet League Two season, which begins tomorrow when Burton Albion visit the Kassam Stadium.

But there are still gaps to be filled, with the clearest need for strength in depth coming up front, where Danny Hylton is backed up by rookies Carlton Morris and James Roberts.

Appleton’s arrival two months after the end of last season has meant he has been playing catch-up ever since.

But while it is not something the U’s boss is keen on repeating next summer, he is looking to make the most of the opportunity as the transfer market changes markedly in the run-up to September 1’s deadline day.

He commented: “What you find is sometimes there will be certain players out there who think they are going to start the season for their clubs.

“When they don’t, they get a bit twitchy and that’s when opportunities arise.

“That’s why you’ve got to be patient.

“There’s a lot to be said for getting your business done early and I’m a big fan of that because it means your recruitment is done properly, but it’s always nice to keep a bit back to have up your sleeve.”

Morris is the latest new face, arriving on loan from Norwich City on Monday.

But Appleton was clear when asked whether the teenager was United’s final addition before the end of the transfer window.

“No chance,” he said.

“We will do business before the end of August, whether that’s in the next week or so or right at the end.

“Again it’s making sure the balance of the squad is right and getting the right one, or right couple, in.

“That will happen, I speak every day to clubs and agents about players.”

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