Murphy Rejects New Deal Before Joining Championship Rivals

On Tuesday, Oxford announced that Josh Murphy would leave the club after the winger failed to agree fresh terms, and would later join Portsmouth on a three-year deal.

The 29-year-old, who was out of contract next month, was a hugely influential figure in the club’s promotion from League One, scoring both goals in the 2-0 win against Bolton Wanderers in the play-off final.

It was believed that the club offered the winger a new deal within 24 hours of that Wembley match, while further negotiations and additional offers have been made, with the latter making him the highest-paid player in the club’s history.

However, the U’s have confirmed those talks were ultimately unsuccessful, and that Murphy has opted to seek a new challenge away from Oxford.

Head of Recruitment, Ed Waldron, said: “Josh departs having played an important role in our promotion success, and it was our ambition to see him remain at the club.

“We have been in contract negotiations with Josh since the turn of the year. The club put forward a fantastic offer and we did everything in our power to keep him at Oxford United.

“Josh has chosen to move on and go elsewhere, and we respect his decision.

“The club have a very clear recruitment strategy in place and will now focus on other targets as we continue to build a competitive squad for the upcoming Championship campaign.”

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