OXFORD United’s month-long search for a striker must be resolved by 11pm tonight.

Boss Karl Robinson was hoping to finally tie up the loose ends on a high-profile loan signing yesterday, but it has now drifted into deadline day itself.

Speaking on Tuesday night, the U’s head coach had a preferred option, but there were two deals lined up.

He said: “The manager, the player and the agent are all OK with it (the No 1 target).

“We’re just waiting for a tick from the board at their club.

“There’s another one lined up as well that we’ve spoken to and wants to come.”

Robinson was looking to finalise the loan yesterday to ensure the new signing could train with the squad this morning.

But the wait for a breakthrough goes on into the final day of the January window.

It also means Robinson has had to abandon his hopes of bringing in two strikers.

“The player knows all my eggs have gone in his basket,” he said.

“We’re bringing in a striker who should be able to carry the burden.”

Until a deal is done, United will need contingency options in mind for the chaotic final hours.

They have cast their net wide this month, but a target from across the Channel has slipped away.

Robinson said: “There was another boy we were looking at in France that we lost out on.

“He would have been the second one.”

If a deal to add firepower is concluded this morning, United will continue to monitor the market.

No late bids for any of their players are expected, but particularly with several managers in the stands for the 2-2 draw with Barnsley, Robinson plans to be ready if an approach tests their resolve.

“We’ve said categorically no-one is for sale,” he said.

“Everyone’s got a price, but it’s more than people can afford.

“I will be in until 7 or 8pm, just in case something comes in that we don’t expect.

“Then I’m active and ready to rock and roll with anything we’ve got to do and make decisions.

“But after 7pm I don’t think anything will materialise.”