OXFORD United’s chairman says it is essential there is a one-club mentality when it comes to the men’s first team, academy side and women’s team.

The latter two outperformed the men’s first team during the 2022/23 season, with the youngsters enjoying a record-breaking run to the quarter-finals of the FA Youth Cup and Liam Gilbert’s Oxford United Women missing out on the Southern Premier Division title on the last day of the season.

The first team meanwhile stumbled to 19th in Sky Bet League One, securing safety under Liam Manning late on in the season.

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U’s chairman Grant Ferguson said: “It’s important to give note to the accomplishments that the women’s team has achieved – it’s outstanding – but people will reflect on the season as a whole as the on-field performance of the men’s first team, and it’s not been a great season.”

On creating a one-club mentality, he added: “We’re finalising a strategic plan and that plan is based around our approach.

“It’s fundamental and it’s not just the teams within the club, it’s how the club interacts with the community and fan engagement.

“We are really serious about making one Oxford United – not three or four different parts to Oxford United, that are out there doing their own thing.”

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About the author

To sign up to Liam’s latest Oxford United newsletter for free, click here: https://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/newsletters/

Formerly the politics reporter for the Oxford Mail, Liam now covers all things Oxford United.

Liam attends the U’s home and away, as well as covering other big sports stories across the county.

His Oxford United newsletter is released every Saturday morning at 6am.