KARL Robinson has defended the exits of senior figures at Oxford United, instead seeing the moves as a positive.

John Mousinho left his role as player-coach at United last week, to take the head coach role at Sky Bet League One rivals Portsmouth.

He followed academy manager Dan Harris out of the club, after he departed the U’s in the summer following four and a half years in the job.

Head of recruitment Mark Thomas meanwhile is poised to join Derby County in a director of football role, although that move will not go through until the closure of the January transfer window, at the very earliest.

United head coach Robinson told BBC Radio Oxford’s Five Minute Fans Forum: “Their journeys have come to a natural end.

“If you look at every football club, there’s a turnover of 30 per cent of staff most years, and some you don’t hear or see of.

“Dan’s came to an end because it’s what he wanted to do.

“John Mousinho wanted to become a manager and the other one is for a very exciting role in the future.

“That’s not a negative, I see it as a positive that people are going on to do things in other areas of the game.

“That’s part of we do – if people stood still here, you’d be criticised for not changing things around so I see it as a positive.”

Robinson also addressed United’s form on the pitch during the forum, with his side 12th in the third tier, eight points shy of the play-off places.

The U’s have only twice this season been able to win consecutive league games, with both of those runs only lasting two matches.

United had the chance to win three games on the bounce in midweek, but fell short when they were beaten 2-0 at Wycombe Wanderers.

“People say that we’re underachieving, 100 per cent I agree,” said Robinson.

“We’re not underachieving internally in how far forward the football club has come.

“We’re underachieving because of the highs that we’ve reached in the last three years.”

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Robinson also vented his frustration at his side’s home form this season, having won just five of 13 league matches at the Kassam Stadium so far this campaign.

“We’ve been poor in games that we should’ve won at home,” said Robinson.

“I live in anger with the fact that Forest Green at home and Morecambe at home – them types of games, I thought we should’ve put our foot down.

“We live with a little bit of anger with that.

“I accept the criticism and stand by some of the mistakes I have made personally, but I never ask for the plaudits when we get it right either.

“I will protect my players and take the blame when things go wrong.

“When we lose, I’m quite happy to stand here and take full responsibility, and be a shield for my players and the football club.”