MARK Jones has played down the uncertainty surrounding which division Oxford City will play in next year.

The side are safe from relegation in Vanarama National League South.

But they are likely to be moved across to the North division in 2019/20, with four southern-based teams likely to come down from the top tier of non-league football.

Boss Jones, whose side travel to Concord Rangers tomorrow, accepts the switch could have an impact on player recruitment.

But he is hopeful it will not become too much of an issue.

He said: “Obviously it’s not ideal because we don’t know what league we will be in yet, and probably won’t do until the season is over.

“But the positive is that we will be remaining at step two, which is quite an achievement in itself.

“A lot of players these days are used to travelling at this level, so I’m sure it won’t affect plans too much.

“I like to think if we do go into the northern section it would be a new challenge with lots of ex-League and National League teams.

“That said, if you gave me the choice, of course I’d prefer to stay in the southern section, but we are where we are, so we will have to wait and see.”

Tomorrow’s trip to play-off chasing Concord represents a big challenge for City, who may be without top-scorer Kabongo Tshimanga.

The hot-shot tweaked his hamstring playing for England C in midweek, and faces a late fitness test.

“It would be a big blow, of course,” said Jones.

“Typically, he’d only just come on as a sub when he tweaked his hamstring, so we will have to assess him closer to the time.

“We are looking to finish the season positively, and I was pleased with our win against Hemel Hempstead.

“We were worthy winners and could have scored a couple more on the day.

“But we had a very tight game with Concord (a 2-0 win) earlier in the season and they are a tough and physical side, so we have to be up for the challenge.”


Oxford City (v Concord Rangers, away) from King, Jones, Moore-Azille, Oastler, Ashby, Fleet, Wiltshire, Tshimanga, Thomas-Asante, Case, Self, Bawling, Carter, O’Donohue, James, Caro, Fasanmade.