OXFORD United are looking into the free agents market as cover for Jamie Hanson’s injury.

The midfielder is expected to be ruled out for three months after suffering a severe hamstring tear in the defeat at Fleetwood Town last weekend.

As the transfer window is now shut, the only potential pool of players for sides looking to strengthen are those who are without a club.

U’s head coach Karl Robinson has limited resources available, but thinks there are targets which could fit the bill.

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“Losing Jamie is a blow and we have one or two ideas internally with how we can change that,” he said.

“There are one or two players who might be free agents we can speak to, but we’ll have to wait and see.

“I wouldn’t say there’s wriggle room (in the budget), but there’s manoeuvring (which could be done).

“It wouldn’t be of great cost to us. It might not be the case and lead to anything, but it’s a question we have to ask.”

He added: “Everyone knows the remit of the season and the building of the club in a proper way, not over-spending.

“I’m not going to do that and put the club in financial difficulty.

“It’s got to be right for the club first and foremost.”

Hanson has started half of United’s games this season as a central midfielder and also offers cover behind Chris Cadden and Sam Long at right back.

And Robinson is frustrated at the timing of the injury for the 23-year-old, who he felt had put the struggles of a testing first season behind him after leaving Derby County.

The U’s boss said: “Sometimes you find yourself in a moment which can drag on for a year or two before you either do well or you have to move on.

“It can be very difficult when you’ve been at a club since you were eight and then finding a new club with different ways of living.

“I thought he’d overcome that in the summer.

“He was really pushing forwards and for him to have this injury now is a big disappointment for us.”